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literally, the study, prevention, and treatment of injuries to the organs and tissues. In the broad sense of the term, traumatology deals with many questions that are the subject matter of one or another surgical discipline (for example, neurosurgery or thoracic surgery), depending on the locus of injury. In the narrower sense, the term is traditionally applied to that division of clinical medicine that deals with injuries to the musculoskeletal system (bones, joints, muscles, ligaments, and tendons) and the skin. In the USSR and certain other countries, traumatology is combined with orthopedics (on the basis of their common anatomical substrate), forming an independent clinical discipline—as reflected in departmental titles and in the designations of scientific research institutes, scientific societies, and journals.

Traumatology, the oldest division of medicine, was the precursor of surgery. Traces of spliced fractures and of cranial bone operations have been found in ancient Egyptian mummies and Roman soldiers’ remains. Instruments are known to have been used in ancient times for operating on external injuries. From its very beginnings, traumatology included both preservative and operative treatment methods.

The basic principles of traumatology were first presented in the works of Hippocrates. Others who made significant contributions to this science were Avicenna, A. Paré, G. Dupuytren, E. O. Mukhin, N. I. Pirogov, A. A. Bobrov, E. T. Kocher, and the French surgeon J. F. Malgaigne (1806–65). Some important developments in traumatology included plaster casts, skeletal traction, and osteosynthesis. War-related “trauma epidemics” are often followed by rapid advances in traumatology and the adoption of new treatment methods.

Early in the 20th century, traumatology emerged as an independent division in the science and practice of surgery; it has grown in importance as a consequence of the rise in urbanization and industrialization, the growth of mass transportation, and the technological advances in living conditions. All these factors have contributed to the increasing number of fatal and crippling injuries from industrial, highway, and home accidents. Among the surgeons who played an important part in the development of traumatology were the German M. Kirschner, the Italian V. Putti, the Austrian L. Böhler, and the Englishman R. Watson-Jones. The founders of the Soviet school of traumatology were G. I. Turner, R. R. Vreden, N. N. Priorov, K. F. Vegner, M. I. Sitenko, V. V. Gorinevskaia, M. O. Fridland, and V. D. Chaklin.

The basic concerns of traumatology today are the study of pathogenetic changes in injured tissues and organs, the improvement of preservative and surgical means of treatment, and the prevention of posttraumatic complications. The prevailing type of treatment is conservative—for example, the single-stage repositioning of fractures, the alignment of bone segments, and the application of immobilizing splints or plaster casts. In the category of surgical intervention, a conservative treatment method that is widely used is that of gradual repositioning by means of skeletal traction or special repositioning devices. Surgical treatment methods have gained greater favor through the development and use of various metallic and plastic devices for osteosyn-thesis.

In most countries, including the USSR, injuries are treated by physicians who specialize in traumatology and orthopedics. Special centers for treating severe and complex traumas were first established in the 1960’s. In the USSR, injuries are treated in the special trauma units and consulting rooms of outpatient polyclinics. Inpatient care is provided in the trauma units or traumatology and orthopedics departments of large hospitals as well as in the surgical departments of rural hospitals. In the medical institutes of higher education, traumatology is taught in the departments of traumatology, orthopedics, and military surgery. (See alsoORTHOPEDICS for information on scientific centers, societies, and periodicals.)


Polenov, A. L. Lechenie i dolechivanie povrezhdenii voennogo i mirnogo vremeni s tochki zreniia sovremennoi travmatologii. Petrograd, 1919.
Gorinevskaia, V. V. “Kratkii ocherk razvitiia travmatologii i voenno-polevoi khirurgii v Sovetskom Soiuze.” In Osnovy travmatologii, 3rd ed., vol. 1. Moscow, 1952.
Mnogotomnoe rukovodstvo po ortopedii i travmatologii, vol. 3. Moscow, 1968.
Watson-Jones, R. Perelomy kostei i povrezhdeniia sustavov. Moscow, 1972. (Translated from English.)


References in periodicals archive ?
Communication between radiology staff and the traumatologist must be clear and concise.
Those Registered Traumatologists became the founding members of the GCP and were ready to apply the lessons that they had learned both in the classroom and in their own state in helping people recover from a terrorist attack.
As part of the faculty at University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), surgeons at the OTI comprise the largest consortium of orthopaedic fellowship-trained traumatologists in California.
External fixation considered the treatment of choice by many traumatologists, has the disadvantages of distraction at the fracture site leading to non-union.
1) As a consequence, both orthopaedic traumatologists and sports medicine specialists regularly encounter patients with these fractures.
This reference addresses primary issues for traumatologists at both the theoretical level and in the context of clinical practice.
Nine traumatologists and clinical psychologists contribute case studies that show how EMDR therapy achieves real results, especially in cases of dissociation and complex trauma.
All patients who underwent open reduction and internal fixation of an ankle fracture at New York University Medical Center or the Hospital for Joint Diseases by three attending traumatologists from December 28, 2009, to February 14, 2011, were asked to participate in this study.
CONCLUSION: The knowledge of the formation, course and distribution with all the possible variations of median nerve is an essential pre-requisite for traumatologists, neurologists, surgeons performing shoulder arthroscopy by anterior gleno-humeral portal and shoulder reconstructive surgeries, neuro-surgeons performing neurotization [nerve repair, nerve transfer] of median nerve
0% of the defects among traumatologists were disturbances of rules in fixation of extremities fractures during transportation, early discharge from hospital, late referring for hospitalization.
This collection of 16 articles addresses basic questions rehabilitation traumatologists have about the epidemiology of trauma-related disability, trauma care systems in the US, early rehabilitation interventions, multiple musculoskeletal trauma, rehabilitation after brain injury and traumatic leg amputation, diagnosis and rehabilitation of peripheral nerve injuries, burns, chronic pain management, management of substance abuse after trauma, adjustment to trauma, quality care indicators for trauma rehabilitation, pediatric patients with disability due to trauma, and prevention of disability secondary to trauma.
All patients with acute tibial plateau fractures were evaluated by one of two orthopaedic traumatologists at our academic medical center.