Facial injuries are common and must be radiologically evaluated to detect fractures, to determine their morphology and topography, and to assess adjacent soft-tissue damage. Spiral multislice computed tomography is progressively replacing conventional films for mandible traumatic lesions because it reveals the multiplicity of fragments, the degree of dislocation and rotation, and the extent of skull base involvement. Computed tomography is also very useful in the evaluation of condylar fractures, to determine the best choice for surgical treatment, open or close. 3-dimensional (3D) computed tomography images can display condylar fractures, but also all mandibular fractures, accurately and directly, and are very useful for surgeons to select treating methods of condylar fractures. The demonstration by imaging of the involvement of key anatomic structures is essential to classify correctly the trauma and to select the best management. Semin Ultrasound CT MRI 30:174-180 (C) 2009 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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