[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: and The Inflammation and the Host Response to Injury Investigators Objective: To determine whether prehospital nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) use may lead to a reduced incidence of trauma-induced coag-ulopathy (TIC) in severely injured patients. Background: TIC is present in up to a quarter of severely injured trauma patients and is linked to worse outcomes after injury. Evidence linking TIC to inflammation has emerged; however, the mechanism behind this association is still under investigation. NSAIDs are commonly used anti-inflammatory drugs, but their effects on TIC and outcomes after injury are largely unex-plored. Methods: We performed a secondary analysis of the Inflammation and the Host Response to Injury Large Scale Collaborative Program (Glue Grant) data set. Prehospital medications and comorbidities were analyzed by logistic regression analysis for association with TIC as defined by laboratory (interna-tional normalized ratio >1.5) or clinical (transfusion >2 units of fresh frozen plasma or >1 pack of platelets in 6 hours) parameters. Results: Prehospital NSIAD use was independently associated with a 72% lower risk of TIC and was the only medication among 15 analyzed to retain significance in the model. Stepwise logistic regression also demonstrated that preadmission use of NSAIDs was independently associated with a 66% lower risk of clinically significant coagulopathy. These findings were independent of comorbid conditions linked to NSAID use. Conclusions: NSAID use before admission for severe injury is associated with a reduced incidence of TIC. These findings provide further evidence to a potential leak between TIC and inflammation. T rauma-induced coagulopathy (TIC) is a unique, endogenous coagulopathy that is present in as many as 25% of severely injured patients with major trauma independent of prehospital From the anticoagulation. 1 Early coagulopathy in trauma has recently been shown to be associated with a greater incidence of multiple-organ failure and nosocomial infection and substantially higher transfusion requirements. 2,3 Importantly, coagulopathy upon presentation to the emergency department has been associated with both early and late mortality. 3 Although TIC has been increasingly recognized as a crit-ical component of the pathophysiology of trauma and hemorrhagic shock, factors that predict the development of TIC remain largely unexplored. 4 The lack of ability to predict TIC makes the design of therapeutic interventions challenging, especially considering that TIC seems to develop rapidly and early after injury. Despite the significance of TIC, little is known about the patho-genesis of this perturbation in normal coagulation. Hyperfibrinolysis, factor V inhibition, and impaired platelet function, among others, have been implicated in the development of TIC. 5 Laboratory data and prospective analysis from severely injured trauma patients have linked the development of TIC to alterations in the thrombomodulin-protein C pathway and excessive activated protein C activation, re-sulting in impaired coagulation. 6–8 These data present a potential link between TIC and inflammation, which is a common finding in other conditions where both sterile (such as myocardial infarction) and pathogen-mediated (sepsis) diseases present with coagulopathy.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Despite a shift toward nonoperative management (NOM) of blunt liver trauma, severe injuries continue to require operative management. Our objective was to examine current trends of NOM for severe blunt liver injury from a national perspective.
Patients with blunt liver injury with Abbreviated Injury Scale (AIS) score of 4 or greater and no other major solid organ injury or pelvic fracture were identified in the National Trauma Data Bank 2002 to 2008. Attempted NOM was defined as no surgery in 6 hours or less. Failed NOM was defined as surgery in greater than 6 hours. Cox regression evaluated the association of NOM outcome with 30-day mortality after controlling for injury severity and center. Logistic regression was used to define independent predictors of failed NOM. Annual attempted and failed NOM rates were compared during the study period.
A total of 3,627 patients were identified with a median Injury Severity Score (ISS) of 29 (interquartile range, 20-38) and 20% mortality. Early operative management occurred in 20%, while initial NOM occurred in 73% of the patients. Of these, 93% had successful NOM, and 7% had failed NOM. Failed NOM was an independent predictor of mortality (hazard ratio, 1.7; 95% confidence interval, 1.1-2.6; p = 0.01). Increasing age, male sex, increasing ISS, decreasing Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) score, hypotension, and hepatic angioembolization were independent predictors of failed NOM. The rate of attempted and failed NOM increased during the study period (p < 0.01).
NOM for isolated severe blunt liver injury is increasing nationally with similar increment in failure. Failed NOM was associated with higher mortality. Several predictors of failed NOM were identified including age, sex, ISS, GCS, and hypotension. These factors may allow for better patient selection and improved outcomes.
Therapeutic study, level IV; prognostic/epidemiologic study, level III.
The journal of trauma and acute care surgery. 10/2013; 75(4):590-5.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Helicopter transport (HT) has evolved from military roots into a critical component of trauma systems throughout the world. Concerns over cost and safety continue to challenge the role of HT in the civilian setting. Despite this, recent evidence has demonstrated a survival advantage for trauma patients undergoing HT. For patients transported from the scene of injury, improved survival has been shown in several multicenter studies as well as evaluation of large national databases. Issues of overtriage, however, remain problematic for scene HT and represent a prime area for future research in helicopter emergency medical systems (EMS). Patients undergoing inter-facility transfer have also been shown to have improved outcomes over ground transport in terms of shorter transfer times and increased survival particularly in more severely injured patients. The benefits seen are likely a result of a combination of rapid transport, advanced medical capabilities, and accessibility to remote terrain. Several subgroups of patients undergoing HT have been the subject of study as well. Patients with severe head injury have consistently been shown to have superior outcomes over ground ambulance, attributable to improvements in airway management early in the course of their injury. Conversely, HT for urban and penetrating injury has not seen similar benefits, likely due to proximity of trauma centers and recent advancements in urban EMS systems. The benefits of including physicians in helicopter crews are less clear and vary by region and system. Helicopter transport for trauma does appear to improve outcomes for trauma patients, and optimizing utilization of this valuable resource will be key as the role of helicopter EMS continues to develop within trauma systems.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Single-center experience has shown that American College of Surgeons (ACS) trauma verification can improve outcomes. The current objective was to compare mortality between ACS-verified and state-designated centers in a national sample.
Subjects 16 years or older from ACS-verified or state-designated Level I and II centers were identified in the National Trauma Databank 2007 to 2008. A predictive mortality model was constructed using Trauma Quality Improvement Project methodology. Imputation was used for missing data. Probability of mortality in the model determined expected deaths. Observed-to-expected (O/E) mortality ratios with 90% confidence interval (CI) and outliers (90% CI more than or less than 1.0) were compared across ACS and state Level I and II centers. The mortality model was repeated with ACS versus state included.
There were 900,274 subjects. The model had an area under the curve of 0.92 to predict death. Level I ACS centers had a lower median O/E ratio compared with state centers (0.95 [interquartile range, 0.82-1.05] vs. 1.02 [interquartile range, 0.87-1.15]; p < 0.01), with no difference in Level II centers. Level II state centers had more high O/E outliers. ACS verification was an independent predictor of survival in Level II centers (odds ratio, 1.26; 95% CI, 1.20-1.32; p < 0.01) but not in Level I centers (p = 0.84).
Level II centers have a disproportionate number of high mortality outliers, and ACS verification is a predictor of survival. Level I ACS centers have lower O/E ratios overall, but no difference in outliers. ACS verification seems beneficial. These data suggest that Level II centers benefit most, and promoting Level II ACS verification may be an opportunity for improved outcomes.
Prognostic study, level III.
The journal of trauma and acute care surgery. 07/2013; 75(1):44-9.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Acute traumatic coagulopathy (ATC) predicts poor outcome after injury. Females have been demonstrated to be hypercoagulable early in the posttrauma period. It remains unclear whether presence of ATC alters sex-based outcomes after injury. This study's objective was to characterize the sex dimorphism after severe injury in the presence and absence of ATC. METHODS: Data were obtained from a multicenter prospective cohort study of patients with blunt trauma and hemorrhagic shock. ATC was defined as arrival international normalized ratio (INR) of greater than 1.5. Cox regression was used to determine the independent risks of mortality and multiple-organ failure associated with sex in subjects with ATC and without (non-ATC) while controlling for important confounders. The sex mortality differences were characterized over time to determine at what point after injury any differential risks diverge. RESULTS: Of 2,007 enrolled subjects, 1,877 had an arrival INR with 439 (23%) having ATC. There was no difference in incidence of ATC across sex (24% vs. 23%; p = 0.95). In the ATC group, no difference in Injury Severity Score, arrival INR, base deficit, temperature, or 24-hour blood requirements were found across sex. Cox hazard regression revealed that sex was not associated with mortality in non-ATC patients (hazard ratio, 0.94; 95% confidence interval, 0.6-1.5). Female sex was independently associated with mortality only in the ATC group (hazard ratio, 2.04; 95% confidence interval, 1.1-3.9; p = 0.03). These mortality risk differences across sex diverged within the first 24 hours after injury. CONCLUSION: An exaggerated sex dimorphism exists for patients with ATC, with females demonstrating a twofold higher independent risk of mortality. These differential mortality risks across sex diverge early after injury, suggesting that they may be caused by an ongoing hemorrhage. Females who present with ATC at admission have a significantly greater risk of poor outcome. Further studies are warranted to explore the mechanisms responsible for sex dimorphism in the setting of ATC. LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: Prognostic study, level II.
The journal of trauma and acute care surgery. 10/2012;
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Helicopter transport (HT) is an important component of American trauma care, but prospectively identifying patients that would benefit from this resource remains difficult. The objective of this study was to assess the role of the National Trauma Triage Protocol (NTTP) in selecting patients that would benefit from HT.
Subjects transported by HT or ground transport from the scene of injury in 2007 were identified using the National Trauma Databank version 8. Criteria from the stepwise NTTP available in the data set were collected including physiologic data, anatomic injuries identified by DRG International Classification of Diseases-9th Rev. codes, and age. Subgroups of patients who met specific triage criteria were evaluated using logistic regression to determine if transport modality was an independent predictor of survival after controlling for demographics, injury severity, prehospital time, and presence of other NTTP triage criteria. Standard test characteristics were calculated for each criterion to predict trauma center need (TCN). The performance of triage criteria to predict TCN was compared between the groups using independent receiver operating characteristic area under the curve analysis.
There were 258,387 subjects transported either by helicopter (16%) or by ground (84%). HT subjects were more severely injured (mean [SD], Injury Severity Score, 15.9  vs. 10.2 , p < 0.01). Logistic regression identified HT as an independent predictor of survival in subjects with a subset of triage criteria, including penetrating injury, GCS<14, RR<10 or >29 breaths per minute, and age>55 years. Each criterion previously mentioned was significantly more predictive of TCN in the HT group than in the ground transport group (p < 0.01).
Patients who meet certain triage criteria in the field seem to have an independent survival benefit if transported to a trauma center by helicopter. Furthermore, these criteria are highly specific and more reliably predict TCN in the HT group. The specific triage criteria listed previously should be carefully considered when developing policies for scene helicopter use in the trauma setting.
The journal of trauma and acute care surgery. 08/2012; 73(2):319-25.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Controversy surrounds the optimal ratios of blood (packed red blood cell [PRBC]), plasma (fresh frozen plasma [FFP]) and platelet (PLT) use for patients requiring massive transfusion (MT) owing to possible survival bias in previous studies. We sought to characterize mortality during the first 24 hours while controlling for time varying effects of transfusion to minimize survival bias.
Data were obtained from a multicenter prospective cohort study of adults with blunt injury and hemorrhagic shock. MT was defined as 10 U of PRBC or more over 24 hours. High FFP/PRBC (≥1:1.5) and PLT/PRBC (≥1:9) ratios at 6, 12, and 24 hours were compared with low ratio groups. Cox proportional hazards regression was used to determine the independent association of high versus low ratios with mortality at 6, 12, and 24 hours while controlling for important confounders. Cox proportional hazards regression was repeated with FFP/PRBC and PLT/PRBC ratios analyzed as time-dependent covariates to account for fluctuation over time. Mortality for more than 24 hours was treated as survival.
In the MT cohort (n = 604), initial base deficit, lactate, and international normalized ratio were similar across high and low ratio groups. High 6-hour FFP/PRBC and PLT/PRBC ratios were independently associated with a reduction in mortality risk at 6, 12, and 24 hours (hazard ratio [HR] range, 0.20-0.41, p < 0.05). These findings were consistent for 12-hour and 24-hour ratios. When analyzed as time-dependent covariates, a high FFP/PRBC ratio was associated with a 68% (HR, 0.32; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.12-0.87, p = 0.03) reduction in 24-hour mortality, and a high PLT/PRBC ratio was associated with a 96% (HR, 0.04; 95% CI, 0.01-0.94, p = 0.04) reduction in 24-hour mortality. Subgroup analysis revealed that a high 1:1 ratio (≥1:1.5) had a significant 24-hour survival benefit relative to a high 1:2 (1:1.51-1:2.50) ratio group at both 6 hours (HR, 0.19; 95% CI, 0.03-0.86, p = 0.03) and 24 hours (HR, 0.25; 95% CI, 0.06-0.95, p = 0.04), suggesting a dose-response relationship. A high FFP/PRBC or PLT/PRBC ratio was not associated with development of multiple-organ failure, nosocomial infection, or adult respiratory distress syndrome in a 28-day Cox proportional hazards regression.
Despite similar degrees of early shock and coagulopathy, high FFP/PRBC and PLT/PRBC ratios are associated with a survival benefit as early as 6 hours and throughout the first 24 hours, even when time-dependent fluctuations of component transfusion are accounted for. This suggests that the observed mortality benefit associated with high component transfusion ratios is unlikely owing to survivor bias and that early attainment of high transfusion ratios may significantly lower the risk of mortality in MT patients.
The journal of trauma and acute care surgery. 08/2012; 73(2):358-64; discussion 364.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Helicopter transport (HT) is frequently used for interfacility transfer of injured patients to a trauma center. The benefits of HT over ground transport (GT) in this setting are unclear. By using a national sample, the objective of this study was to assess whether HT impacted outcomes following interfacility transfer of trauma patients.
Patients transferred by HT or GT in 2007 were identified using the National Trauma Databank (version 8). Injury severity, resource utilization, and survival to discharge were compared. Stepwise logistic regression was used to determine whether transport modality was a predictor of survival after adjusting for covariates. Regression analysis was repeated in subgroups with Injury Severity Score (ISS)≤15 and ISS>15.
There were 74,779 patients transported by helicopter (20%) or ground (80%). Mean ISS was higher in patients transported by helicopter (17±11 vs. 12±9; p<0.01) as was the proportion with ISS>15 (49% vs. 28%; odds ratio [OR], 2.53; 95% confidence interval [CI], 2.43-2.63). Patients transported by helicopter had higher rates of intensive care unit admission (54% vs. 29%; OR, 2.86; 95% CI, 2.75-2.96), had shorter transport time (61±55 minutes vs. 98±71 minutes; p<0.01), and had shorter overall prehospital time (135±86 minutes vs. 202±132 minutes; p<0.01). HT was not a predictor of survival overall or in patients with ISS≤15. In patients with ISS>15, HT was a predictor of survival (OR, 1.09; 95% CI, 1.02-1.17; p=0.01).
Patients transported by helicopter were more severely injured and required more hospital resources than patients transported by ground. HT offered shorter transport and overall prehospital times. For patients with ISS>15, HT was a predictor of survival. These findings should be considered when developing interfacility transfer policies for patients with severe injuries.
The Journal of trauma 02/2011; 70(2):310-4. · 2.35 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Centers for Disease Control recently updated the National Trauma Triage Protocol. This field triage algorithm guides emergency medical service providers through four decision steps (physiologic [PHY], anatomic [ANA], mechanism, and special considerations) to identify patients who would benefit from trauma center care. The study objective was to analyze whether trauma center need (TCN) was accurately predicted solely by the PHY and ANA criteria using national data.
Trauma patients aged 18 years and older were identified in the NTDB (2002-2006). PHY data and ANA injuries (International Classification of Diseases, ninth revision codes) were collected. TCN was defined as Injury Severity Score (ISS)>15, intensive care unit admission, or need for urgent surgery. Test characteristics were calculated according to steps in the triage algorithm. Logistic regression was performed to determine independent association of criteria with outcomes. Receiver operating characteristic curves were constructed for each model.
A total of 1,086,764 subjects were identified. Sensitivity of PHY criteria was highest for ISS>15 (42%) and of ANA criteria for urgent surgery (37%). By using PHY and ANA steps, sensitivity was highest (56%) and undertriage lowest (45%) for ISS>15. Undertriage for TCN based on actual treating trauma center level was 11%.
Current PHY and ANA criteria are highly specific for TCN but result in a high degree of undertriage when applied independently. This implies that additional factors such as mechanism of injury and the special considerations included in the Centers for Disease Control decision algorithm contribute significantly to the effectiveness of this field triage tool.
The Journal of trauma 01/2011; 70(1):38-44; discussion 44-5. · 2.35 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The role of helicopter transport (HT) in civilian trauma care remains controversial. The objective of this study was to compare patient outcomes after transport from the scene of injury by HT and ground transport using a national patient sample.
Patients transported from the scene of injury by HT or ground transport in 2007 were identified using the National Trauma Databank version 8. Injury severity, utilization of hospital resources, and outcomes were compared. Stepwise logistic regression was used to determine whether transport modality was a predictor of survival or discharge to home after adjusting for covariates.
There were 258,387 patients transported by helicopter (16%) or ground (84%). Mean Injury Severity Score was higher in HT patients (15.9 ± 12.3 vs. 10.2 ± 9.5, p < 0.01), as was the percentage of patients with Injury Severity Score >15 (42.6% vs. 20.8%; odds ratio [OR], 2.83; 95% confidence interval [CI], 2.76-2.89). HT patients had higher rates of intensive care unit admission (43.5% vs. 22.9%; OR, 2.58; 95% CI, 2.53-2.64) and mechanical ventilation (20.8% vs. 7.4%; OR, 3.30; 95% CI, 3.21-3.40). HT was a predictor of survival (OR, 1.22; 95% CI, 1.17-1.27) and discharge to home (OR, 1.05; 95% CI, 1.02-1.07) after adjustment for covariates.
Trauma patients transported by helicopter were more severely injured, had longer transport times, and required more hospital resources than those transported by ground. Despite this, HT patients were more likely to survive and were more likely to be discharged home after treatment when compared with those transported by ground. Despite concerns regarding helicopter utilization in the civilian setting, this study shows that HT has merit and impacts outcome.
The Journal of trauma 11/2010; 69(5):1030-4; discussion 1034-6. · 2.35 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The mortality of traumatic brain injury (TBI) continues to decline, emphasizing functional outcomes. Trauma center designation has been linked to survival after TBI, but the impact on functional outcomes is unclear. The objective was to determine whether trauma center designation influenced functional outcomes after moderate and severe TBI.
Trauma subjects presenting to an American College of Surgeons (ACS) Level I or II trauma center with a Glasgow Coma Score (GCS) <or=12 who survived to discharge were identified using the National Trauma Databank (2002-2006). Outcomes were functional independence (FI) defined as a modified functional independence measure (FIM) of 12, and independent expression (IE) defined as a FIM component of 4. These were compared between Level I and Level II centers in subjects with both moderate (GCS 9-12) and severe (GCS <or=8) TBI using stepwise logistic regression to adjust for demographics, injuries, and comorbidities.
Analysis identified 25,170 subjects (72% severe TBI). After adjusting for covariates, ACS Level I designation was associated with FI (odds ratio: 1.16; confidence interval: 1.07-1.24, p < 0.01) and IE (1.10; 1.03-1.17, p < 0.01) after severe TBI. Trauma center designation was not associated with FI or IE after moderate TBI.
ACS trauma center designation is significantly associated with FI and IE after severe, but not moderate TBI. Prospective study is warranted to verify and explore factors contributing to this discrepancy.
The Journal of trauma 08/2010; 69(2):263-9. · 2.35 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Industry statistics suggest that motorcycle owners in the United States are getting older. Our objective was to analyze the effect of this demographic shift on injuries and outcomes after a motorcycle crash. Injured motorcyclists aged 17 to 89 years in the National Trauma Databank were reviewed from 1996 to 2005. Age trends and injury patterns were assessed over time. Injury Severity Score (ISS), length of stay (LOS), intensive care unit (ICU) use, comorbidities, complications, mortality, injury patterns, helmet use, and alcohol use were compared for subjects 40 and older versus those younger than 40-years-old. There were 61,689 subjects included. Over the study period, the mean age increased from 33.9 to 39.1 years (P < 0.01), and the proportion of subjects 40 years of age or older increased from 27.9 to 48.3 per cent. ISS, LOS, ICU LOS, and mortality were higher in the 40 years of age or older group (P < or = 0.01). The rates of admission to the ICU (32.3 vs. 27.3%), pre-existing comorbidities (20 vs. 9.7%), and complications (7.6 vs. 5.5%) were all higher in the 40 years of age and older group (P < 0.01). The average age of the injured motorcyclist is increasing. Older riders' injuries appear more serious, and their hospital course is more likely to be challenged by comorbidities and complications contributing to poorer outcomes. Motorcycle safety education and training initiatives should be expanded to specifically target older motorcyclists.
The American surgeon 03/2010; 76(3):279-86. · 0.92 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Prehospital spinal immobilization (PHSI) is routinely applied to patients sustaining torso gunshot wounds (GSW). Our objective was to evaluate the potential benefit of PHSI after torso GSW versus the potential to interfere with other critical aspects of care.
A retrospective analysis of all patients with torso GSW in the Strong Memorial Hospital (SMH) trauma registry during a 41-month period and all patients with GSW in the National Trauma Data Bank (NTDB) during a 60-month period was conducted. PHSI was considered potentially beneficial in patients with spine fractures requiring surgical stabilization in the absence of spinal cord injury (SCI).
Three hundred fifty-seven subjects from SMH and 75,210 from NTDB were included. A total of 9.2% of SMH subjects and 4.3% of NTDB subjects had spine injury, with 51.5% of SMH subjects and 32.3% of NTDB subjects having SCI. No SMH subject had an unstable spine fracture requiring surgical stabilization without complete neurologic injury. No subjects with SCI improved or worsened, and none developed a new deficit. Twenty-six NTDB subjects (0.03%) had spine fractures requiring stabilization in the absence of SCI. Emergent intubation was required in 40.6% of SMH subjects and 33.8% of NTDB subjects. Emergent surgical intervention was required in 54.5% of SMH subjects and 43% of NTDB subjects.
Our data suggest that the benefit of PHSI in patients with torso GSW remains unproven, despite a potential to interfere with emergent care in this patient population. Large prospective studies are needed to clarify the role of PHSI after torso GSW.
The Journal of trauma 10/2009; 67(4):774-8. · 2.35 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The role of the ventricular assist device (VAD) in the management of heart failure is expanding. Despite its success, the clinical course for patients requiring noncardiac surgery (NCS) during VAD support is not well described. The objective of this study was to identify VAD patients requiring NCS (+NCS) and compare outcomes with those not requiring NCS (-NCS).
Patients undergoing VAD implant from 2000 to 2007 were reviewed. NCS procedures, survival, and complications were collected. Survival at 1 year from implant, overall survival at the study conclusion, survival time from implant, and outcome of VAD therapy were compared between groups.
We enrolled 142 subjects. Demographics did not differ between groups. Twenty-five subjects (18%) underwent 27 NCS procedures. Perioperative survival was 100% and 28-day survival was 64%. Survival to discharge was 56%. Bleeding occurred in 48%. Infection occurred in 33%. Estimated blood loss was 355 mL, and the international normalized ratio at time of NCS was 1.9. Laparoscopy was performed in 3 cases. There was no difference in 1-year survival (59% vs 54%), survival at study conclusion (44% vs 46%) or survival time (517 vs 523 days) between +NCS subjects and -NCS subjects. There were similar causes of death in both groups. The +NCS group was on VAD support longer (245 vs 87 days; P < .01), and less likely to undergo heart transplantation (12% vs 35%; P < .01).
NCS is not uncommon during VAD therapy. Bleeding and infection were common complications. Despite this, NCS seems to be feasible and safe and does not seem to increase mortality in the VAD population.
Surgery 10/2009; 146(4):627-33; discussion 633-4. · 3.37 Impact Factor