[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Platelet dysfunction has been attributed to progression of initial intracranial hemorrhage (ICH) on repeat head computed tomographic (RHCT) scans in patients on prehospital antiplatelet therapy. However, there is little emphasis on the effect of platelet count and progression of ICH in patients with traumatic brain injury. The aim of this study was to determine the platelet count cutoff for progression on RHCT and neurosurgical intervention in patients on antiplatelet therapy.
The Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery 09/2014; 77(3):417-421. · 2.35 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Abstract Introduction: Conventionally, a Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) score of 13-15 defines mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI). The aim of this study was to identify the factors that predict progression on repeat head computed tomography (RHCT) and neurosurgical intervention (NSI) in patients categorized as mild TBI with intracranial injury (intracranial haemorrhage and/or skull fracture). Methods: This study performed a retrospective chart review of all patients with traumatic brain injury who presented to a level 1 trauma centre. Patients with blunt TBI, an intracranial injury and admission GCS of 13-15 without anti-platelet and anti-coagulation therapy were included. The outcome measures were: progression on RHCT and need for neurosurgical intervention (craniotomy and/or craniectomy). Results: A total of 1800 patients were reviewed, of which 876 patients were included. One hundred and fifteen (13.1%) patients had progression on RHCT scan. Progression on RHCT was 8-times more likely in patients with subdural haemorrhage ≥10 mm, 5-times more likely with epidural haemorrhage ≥10 mm and 3-times more likely with base deficit ≥4. Forty-seven patients underwent a neurosurgical intervention. Patients with displaced skull fracture were 10-times more likely and patients with base deficit >4 were 21-times more likely to have a neurosurgical intervention. Conclusion: In patients with intracranial injury, a mild GCS score (GCS 13-15) in patients with an intracranial injury does not preclude progression on repeat head CT and the need for a neurosurgical intervention. Base deficit greater than four and displaced skull fracture are the greatest predictors for neurosurgical intervention in patients with mild TBI and an intracranial injury.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The significance of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in trauma patients is well recognized. The impact trauma surgeons endure in managing critical trauma cases is unknown. The aim of our study was to assess the incidence of PTSD among trauma surgeons and identify risk factors associated with the development of PTSD.
The Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery 07/2014; 77(1):148-154. · 2.35 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Frailty Index has been shown to predict discharge disposition in geriatric patients. The aim of this study was to validate the modified 15-variable Trauma-Specific Frailty Index (TSFI) to predict discharge disposition in geriatric trauma patients. We hypothesized that TSFI can predict discharge disposition in geriatric trauma patients.
Journal of the American College of Surgeons 07/2014; 219(1):10-17.e1. · 4.50 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: IMPORTANCE The Frailty Index (FI) is a known predictor of adverse outcomes in geriatric patients. The usefulness of the FI as an outcome measure in geriatric trauma patients is unknown. OBJECTIVE To assess the usefulness of the FI as an effective assessment tool in predicting adverse outcomes in geriatric trauma patients. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS A 2-year (June 2011 to February 2013) prospective cohort study at a level I trauma center at the University of Arizona. We prospectively measured frailty in all geriatric trauma patients. Geriatric patients were defined as those 65 years or older. The FI was calculated using 50 preadmission frailty variables. Frailty in patients was defined by an FI of 0.25 or higher. MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES The primary outcome measure was in-hospital complications. The secondary outcome measure was adverse discharge disposition. In-hospital complications were defined as cardiac, pulmonary, infectious, hematologic, renal, and reoperation. Adverse discharge disposition was defined as discharge to a skilled nursing facility or in-hospital mortality. Multivariate logistic regression was used to assess the relationship between the FI and outcomes. RESULTS In total, 250 patients were enrolled, with a mean (SD) age of 77.9 (8.1) years, median Injury Severity Score of 15 (range, 9-18), median Glasgow Coma Scale score of 15 (range, 12-15), and mean (SD) FI of 0.21 (0.10). Forty-four percent (n = 110) of patients had frailty. Patients with frailty were more likely to have in-hospital complications (odds ratio, 2.5; 95% CI, 1.5-6.0; P = .001) and adverse discharge disposition (odds ratio, 1.6; 95% CI, 1.1-2.4; P = .001). The mortality rate was 2.0% (n = 5), and all patients who died had frailty. CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE The FI is an independent predictor of in-hospital complications and adverse discharge disposition in geriatric trauma patients. This index should be used as a clinical tool for risk stratification in this patient group.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Falls from ladders account for a significant number of hospital visits. However, the epidemiology, injury pattern, and how age affects such falls are poorly described in the literature.
Journal of Surgical Research 06/2014; · 2.02 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The development of coagulopathy of trauma is multifactorial associated with hypoperfusion and consumption of coagulation factors. Previous studies have compared the role of factor replacement versus FPP for reversal of trauma coagulopathy. The purpose of our study was to determine the time to correction of coagulopathy and blood product requirement in patients who received PCC+FFP compared with patients who received FFP alone.
We performed a retrospective analysis of a prospectively maintained database of all coagulopathic (INR ≥ 1.5) trauma patients presenting to our level I trauma center during a 2-years period (2011-2012). Patients were stratified into two groups: patients who received PCC+FFP and patients who received FFP alone. Patients in the two groups were matched in a 1:3 (PCC+FFP:FFP) ratio using propensity score matching for demographics, injury severity, vital parameters, and initial INR. The two groups were then compared for: correction of INR, time to correction of INR, thromboembolic complications, mortality, and cost of therapy.
A total of 252 were included in the analysis [PCC+FFP:63; FFP:189]. The mean age was 44 ± 20 years; 70 % were male, with a median ISS score of 27 [16-38]. PCC use was associated with an accelerated correction of INR (394 vs. 1,050 min; p 0.001), reduction in requirement of pack red blood cell (6.6 vs. 10 units; p 0.001) and FFP (2.8 vs. 3.9 units; p 0.01), and decline in mortality (23 vs. 28 %; p 0.04). PCC+FFP use was associated with a higher cost of therapy ($1,470 ± 845 vs. 1,171 ± 949; p 0.01) but lower overall cost of transfusion ($7,110 ± 1,068 vs. 9,571 ± 1,524; p 0.01) compared with FFP therapy alone.
PCC in conjunction with FFP rapidly corrects INR in a matched cohort of trauma patients not on warfarin therapy compared with FFP therapy alone. The use of PCC as an adjunct to FFP therapy is associated with reduction of blood product requirement and also lowers overall cost.
World Journal of Surgery 05/2014; · 2.23 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Studies have proposed a neuroprotective role for alcohol (ETOH) in traumatic brain injury (TBI). We hypothesized that ETOH intoxication is associated with mortality in patients with severe TBI.
Journal of Surgical Research 05/2014; · 2.02 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Protocols call for the start of hormonal therapy with levothyroxine after the declaration of brain death. As the hormonal perturbations occur during the process of brain death, the role of the early initiation of levothyroxine therapy (LT) to salvage organs is not well defined. The aim of this study was to evaluate the impact of early LT (before the declaration of brain death) on the number of solid organs procured per donor.
We performed an 8-year retrospective analysis of all trauma patients who progressed to brain death. Patients who consented for organ donation, received LT, and donated solid organs were included. Patients were dichotomized into two groups: early LT group, patients who received LT before the declaration of brain death, and late LT group, those who received LT after brain death. The two groups were compared for differences in demographics, clinical characteristics, need for vasopressor, and number of solid organ donation.
A total of 100 solid organ donors were identified of which, 41% (n=77) donors who received LT therapy were included. LT before the declaration of brain death was initiated in 37 patients compared with 40 patients who had it started after the declaration of brain death. There was no difference in demographics between the two groups except that patients in the early LT group were more likely to be hypotensive on presentation (54% vs. 25%, p = 0.001). Early LT therapy was associated with an increase in solid organ procurement rate (odds ratio, 1.9; 95% confidence interval, 1.4-2.7; p = 0.01). Sixty-seven patients donated a total of 291 solid organs.
The early use of LT and aggressive blood product resuscitation was associated with a significantly higher number of solid organs donated per donor. Earlier use of LT before the declaration of brain death may be considered in potential organ donors.
Therapeutic/care management study, level IV.
The journal of trauma and acute care surgery. 05/2014; 76(5):1301-5.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Abstract Rural trauma care has been regarded as being the "challenge for the next decade." Trauma patients in rural areas face more struggles than their urban counterparts because of the absence of specialized trauma care, delay in providing immediate care to trauma victims, and longer transport times to reach a trauma center. Telemedicine is a promising tool for facilitating rural trauma care. This stellar tool creates a real-time link between a remotely located specialist and the local healthcare provider, especially during the initial management of the trauma patient, involving resuscitation and even intubation. However, the high cost of purchasing, setting up, and maintaining all the needed equipment has made telemedicine an expensive proposition for rural hospitals, which frequently have limited budgets. But recently, new improvements in communication technology have made smartphones an indispensable part of daily life, even in rural areas. These devices have great potential to improve patient care and enhance medical education because of their wide adoption and ease of use. In this article, we describe our initial teletrauma experience and the effect of smartphone implementation in patient care and medical education at the University of Arizona Medical Center in Tucson.
Telemedicine and e-Health 04/2014; · 1.40 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Heart rate and systolic blood pressure are unreliable in geriatric trauma patients. Shock index (SI) (heart rate/systolic blood pressure) is a simple marker of worse outcomes after injury. The aim of this study was to assess the utility of SI in predicting outcomes. We hypothesized that SI predicts mortality in geriatric trauma patients.
We performed a 4-year (2007-2010) retrospective analysis using the National Trauma Data Bank. Patients 65 years or older were included. Transferred patients, patients dead on arrival, missing vitals on presentation, and patients with burns and traumatic brain injury were excluded. A cutoff value of SI greater than or equal to 1 (sensitivity, 81%; specificity, 79%) was used to define hemodynamic instability. The primary outcome measure was mortality. Secondary outcome measures were need for blood transfusion, need for exploratory laparotomy, and development of in-hospital complications. Multiple logistic regressions were performed.
A total of 485,595 geriatric patients were reviewed, of whom 217,190 were included. The mean (SD) age was 77.7 (7.1) years, 60% were males, median Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) score was 14 (range, 3-15), median Injury Severity Score (ISS) was 9 (range, 4-18), and mean (SD) SI was 0.58 (0.18). Three percent (n = 6,585) had an SI greater than or equal to 1. Patients with SI greater than or equal to 1 were more likely to require blood product requirement (p = 0.001), require an exploratory laparotomy (p = 0.01), and have in-hospital complications (p = 0.02). The overall mortality rate was 4.1% (n = 8,952). SI greater than or equal to 1 was the strongest predictor for mortality (odds ratio, 3.1; 95% confidence interval, 2.6-3.3; p = 0.001) in geriatric trauma patients. Systolic blood pressure (p = 0.09) and heart rate (p = 0.2) were not predictive of mortality.
SI is an accurate and specific predictor of morbidity and mortality in geriatric trauma patients. SI is superior to heart rate and systolic blood pressure for predicting mortality in geriatric trauma patients. Geriatric trauma patients with SI greater than or equal to 1 should be transferred to a Level 1 trauma center.
Prognostic/epidemiologic study, level III.
The journal of trauma and acute care surgery. 04/2014; 76(4):1111-5.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Coagulopathy is a defined barrier for organ donation in patients with lethal traumatic brain injuries. The purpose of this study was to document our experience with the use of prothrombin complex concentrate (PCC) to facilitate organ donation in patients with lethal traumatic brain injuries. We performed a 4-year retrospective analysis of all patients with devastating gunshot wounds to the brain. The data were analyzed for demographics, change in international normalized ratio (INR), and subsequent organ donation. The primary end point was organ donation. Eighty-eight patients with lethal traumatic brain injury were identified from the trauma registry of whom 13 were coagulopathic at the time of admission (mean INR 2.2 ± 0.8). Of these 13 patients, 10 patients received PCC in an effort to reverse their coagulopathy. Mean INR before PCC administration was 2.01 ± 0.7 and 1.1 ± 0.7 after administration (P < 0.006). Correction of coagulopathy was attained in 70 per cent (seven of 10) patients. Of these seven patients, consent for donation was obtained in six patients and resulted in 19 solid organs being procured. The cost of PCC per patient was $1022 ± 544. PCC effectively reveres coagulopathy associated with lethal traumatic brain injury and enabled patients to proceed to organ donation. Although various methodologies exist for the treatment of coagulopathy to facilitate organ donation, PCC provides a rapid and cost-effective therapy for reversal of coagulopathy in patients with lethal traumatic brain injuries.
The American surgeon 04/2014; 80(4):335-338. · 0.92 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: It is becoming a standard practice that any "positive" identification of a radiographic intracranial injury requires transfer of the patient to a trauma center for observation and repeat head computed tomography (RHCT). The purpose of this study was to define guidelines-based on each patient's history, physical examination, and initial head CT findings-regarding which patients require a period of observation, RHCT, or neurosurgical consultation.
In our retrospective cohort analysis, we reviewed the records of 3,803 blunt traumatic brain injury patients during a 4-year period. We classified patients according to neurologic examination results, use of intoxicants, anticoagulation status, and initial head CT findings. We then developed brain injury guidelines (BIG) based on the individual patient's need for observation or hospitalization, RHCT, or neurosurgical consultation.
A total of 1,232 patients had an abnormal head CT finding. In the BIG 1 category, no patients worsened clinically or radiographically or required any intervention. BIG 2 category had radiographic worsening in 2.6% of the patients. All patients who required neurosurgical intervention (13%) were in BIG 3. There was excellent agreement between assigned BIG and verified BIG. κ statistic is equal to 0.98.
We have proposed BIG based on patient's history, neurologic examination, and findings of initial head CT scan. These guidelines must be used as supplement to good clinical examination while managing patients with traumatic brain injury. Prospective validation of the BIG is warranted before its widespread implementation.
Epidemiologic study, level III.
The journal of trauma and acute care surgery. 04/2014; 76(4):965-9.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To determine the impact of the increasing aging population on trauma mortality relative to mortality from cancer and heart disease in the United States.
The population in the United States continues to increase as medical advancements allow people to live longer. The resulting changes in the leading causes of death have not yet been recognized.
Data were obtained (2000-2010) from the Web-based Injury Statistics Query and Reporting System database of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. We defined trauma deaths as unintentional injuries, suicides, and homicides.
From 2000 to 2010, the US population increased by 9.7% and the number of trauma deaths increased by 22.8%. Trauma deaths and death rates deceased in individuals younger than 25 years but increased for those 25 years and older. During this period, death rates for cancer and heart disease decreased. The largest increases in trauma deaths were in individuals in their fifth and sixth decades of life. Since 2000, the largest proportional increase (118%) in crude trauma deaths occurred in 54-year-olds. Overall, in 2010, trauma was the leading cause of death in individuals 46 years and younger. Trauma remains the leading cause of years of life lost.
Trauma is now the leading cause of death for individuals 46 years and younger. The largest increase in the number of trauma deaths and the highest crude number of trauma deaths occurred in baby boomers. Policy makers allocating resources should be made aware of the larger impact of trauma on our aging and burgeoning US population.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Senate Bill 1108 (SB-1108) allows adult citizens to carry concealed weapons without a permit and without completion of a training course. It is unclear whether the law creates a "deterrent factor" to criminals or whether it escalates gun-related violence. We hypothesized that the enactment of SB-1108 resulted in an increase in gun-related injuries and deaths (GRIDs) in southern Arizona.
We performed a retrospective cohort study spanning 24 months before (prelaw) and after (postlaw) SB-1108. We collected injury and death data and overall crime and accident trends. Injured patients were dichotomized based on whether their injuries were intentional (iGRIDs) or accidental (aGRIDs). The primary outcome was any GRID. To determine proportional differences in GRIDs between the two periods, we performed χ analyses. For each subgroup, we calculated relative risk (RR).
The number of national and state background checks for firearms purchases increased in the postlaw period (national and state p < 0.001); that increase was proportionately reflected in a relative increase in state firearm purchase in the postlaw period (1.50% prelaw vs. 1.59% postlaw, p < 0.001). Overall, victims of events potentially involving guns had an 11% increased risk of being injured or killed by a firearm (p = 0.036) The proportion of iGRIDs to overall city violent crime remained the same during the two periods (9.74% prelaw vs. 10.36% postlaw; RR, 1.06; 95% confidence interval, 0.96-1.17). However, in the postlaw period, the proportion of gun-related homicides increased by 27% after SB-1108 (RR, 1.27; 95% confidence interval, 1.02-1.58).
Both nationally and statewide, firearm purchases increased after the passage of SB-1108. Although the proportion of iGRIDs to overall city violent crime remained the same, the proportion of gun-related homicides increased. Liberalization of gun access is associated with an increase in fatalities from guns.
Epidemiologic study, level III.
The journal of trauma and acute care surgery. 03/2014; 76(3):569-575.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Patients receiving antiplatelet medications are considered to be at an increased risk for traumatic intracranial hemorrhage after blunt head trauma. However, most studies have categorized all antiplatelet drugs into one category. The aim of our study was to evaluate clinical outcomes and the requirement of a repeat head computed tomography (RHCT) in patients on preinjury clopidogrel therapy.
Patients with traumatic brain injury with intracranial hemorrhage on initial head CT were prospectively enrolled. Patients on preinjury clopidogrel were matched with patients exclusive of antiplatelet and anticoagulation therapy using a propensity score in a 1:1 ratio for age, Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS), head Abbreviated Injury Scale (h-AIS), Injury Severity Score (ISS), neurologic examination, and platelet transfusion. Outcome measures were progression on RHCT scan and need for neurosurgical intervention.
A total of 142 patients with intracranial hemorrhage on initial head CT scan (clopidogrel, 71; no clopidogrel, 71) were enrolled. The mean (SD) age was 70.5 (15.1) years, 66% were male, median GCS score was 14 (range, 3-15), and median h-AIS (ISS) was 3 (range, 2-5). The mean (SD) platelet count was 210 (101), and 61% (n = 86) of the patients received platelet transfusion. Patients on preinjury clopidogrel were more likely to have progression on RHCT (odds ratio [OR], 5.1; 95% confidence interval [CI], 3.1-7.1) and RHCT as a result of clinical deterioration (OR, 2.1; 95% CI, 1.8-3.5). The overall rate of neurosurgical intervention was 4.2% (n = 6). Patients on clopidogrel therapy were more likely to require a neurosurgical intervention (OR, 1.8; 95% CI, 1.4-3.1).
Preinjury clopidogrel therapy is associated with progression of initial insult on RHCT scan and need for neurosurgical intervention. Preinjury clopidogrel therapy as an independent variable should warrant the need for a routine RHCT scan in patients with traumatic brain injury.
Prognostic study, level I; therapeutic study, level II.
The journal of trauma and acute care surgery. 03/2014; 76(3):817-820.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The rate of mortality and factors predicting worst outcomes in the geriatric population presenting with trauma are not well established. This study aimed to examine mortality rates in severe and extremely severe injured individuals 65 years or older and to identify the predictors of mortality based on available evidence in the literature.
We performed a systematic literature search on studies reporting mortality and severity of injury in geriatric trauma patients using MEDLINE, PubMed, and Web of Science.
An overall mortality rate of 14.8% (95% confidence interval [CI], 9.8-21.7%) in geriatric trauma patients was observed. Increasing age and severity of injury were found to be associated with higher mortality rates in this patient population. Combined odds of dying in those older than 74 years was 1.67 (95% CI, 1.34-2.08) compared with the elderly population aged 65 years to 74 years. However, the odds of dying in patients 85 years and older compared with those of 75 years to 84 years was not different (odds ratio, 1.23; 95% CI, 0.99-1.52). A pooled mortality rate of 26.5% (95% CI, 23.4-29.8%) was observed in the severely injured (Injury Severity Score [ISS] ≥ 16) geriatric trauma patients. Compared with those with mild or moderate injury, the odds of mortality in severe and extremely severe injuries were 9.5 (95% CI, 6.3-14.5) and 52.3 (95% CI, 32.0-85.5; p ≤ 0.0001), respectively. Low systolic blood pressure had a pooled odds of 2.16 (95% CI, 1.59-2.94) for mortality.
Overall mortality rate among the geriatric population presenting with trauma is higher than among the adult trauma population. Patients older than 74 years experiencing traumatic injuries are at a higher risk for mortality than the younger geriatric group. However, the trauma-related mortality sustains the same rate after the age of 74 years without any further increase. Moreover, severe and extremely severe injuries and low systolic blood pressure at the presentation among geriatric trauma patients are significant risk factors for mortality.
Systematic review and meta-analysis, level IV.
The journal of trauma and acute care surgery. 03/2014; 76(3):894-901.