Maxillofacial fractures are a common presentation within general practice, particularly fractures associated with low-impact trauma, and in rural and remote settings. Recognising the key clinical features of different types of maxillofacial fractures and red flags for urgent referral can help GPs investigate and manage patients with these injuries.
Maxillofacial trauma, including facial fracture, is a common presentation to Australian emergency departments and general practices, with such injuries associated with significant morbidity. As a result, identification and referral to an appropriate surgical unit is crucial to the optimal management of patients presenting with these injuries. This article outlines the key features of maxillofacial fractures that may be seen in general practice, and the role of the GP in their identification and management. An example case study of how to assess and manage a patient with maxillofacial trauma in rural general practice is shown in Box 1.