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Cuadernos de Medicina Forense

versión On-line ISSN 1988-611Xversión impresa ISSN 1135-7606


MENENDEZ, J.A.; PERA, F.J.  y  MORCILLO, R.. Assessment of ocular injuries due to traffic accidents. Cuad. med. forense [online]. 2008, n.51, pp.25-33. ISSN 1988-611X.

Aim: To analyse how it is performed, from expert evidence view point, the assessment of ocular injuries and after-effects due to traffic accidents in our area. Method: We have accomplished a retrospective study of 127 reports on ocular injuries, carried out in the Ophthalmologic Section of the Medical Forensic Clinic of Madrid for five years -from 2002 to 2006-, analyzing the following variables: the proportion represented by traffic accidents (TAs); the kind of injury sustained in the TAs; the average length of sick leave; the most frequent after-effects; and the overall average punctuation given to these ocular after-effects. Results: TAs represent the cause of a quarter of the ocular after-effects we see. The most frequent injuries produced in an accident are cranioencephalic traumatisms, direct ocular contusions, and cervical sprains. We have met a high percentage of cases (22%) in which we have not found objective injuries that can justify the pains claimed by the injured, or rather the pains are not evidently connected with the TAs suffered. Conclusions: TAs are one of the most frequent causes of ocular after-effects (diplopias, decreases of visual acuity...), with an average punctuation of 15 points and an average length of sick leave of 71 days, existing an important percentage of unjustified claims. It is considered as necessary the revision of the present scale of the Law 34/2003 rectifying errors and defects that it presents and including typically post-traumatic ocular after-effects, which are not registered presently, to facilitate the assessment of ocular after-effects.

Palabras clave : traffic accidents; ocular injuries; forensic medicine; ocular after-effects; evaluation of corporal damage.

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