The role of pre-hospital blood gas analysis in trauma resuscitation

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Background: To assess, whether arterial blood gas measurements during trauma patient's pre-hospital shock resuscitation yield useful information on haemodynamic response to fluid resuscitation by comparing haemodynamic and blood gas variables in patients undergoing two different fluid resuscitation regimens.Methods: In a prospective randomised study of 37 trauma patients at risk for severe hypovolaemia, arterial blood gas values were analyzed at the accident site and on admission to hospital. Patients were randomised to receive either conventional fluid therapy or 300 ml of hypertonic saline. The groups were compared for demographic, injury severity, physiological and outcome variables.Results: 37 patients were included. Mean (SD) Revised Trauma Score (RTS) was 7.3427 (0.98) and Injury Severity Score (ISS) 15.1 (11.7). Seventeen (46%) patients received hypertonic fluid resuscitation and 20 (54%) received conventional fluid therapy, with no significant differences between the groups concerning demographic data or outcome. Base excess (BE) values decreased significantly more within the hypertonic saline (HS) group compared to the conventional fluid therapy group (mean BE difference -2.1 mmol/l vs. -0.5 mmol/l, p = 0.003). The pH values on admission were significantly lower within the HS group (mean 7.31 vs. 7.40, p = 0.000). Haemoglobin levels were in both groups lower on admission compared with accident site. Lactate levels on admission did not differ significantly between the groups.Conclusion: Pre-hospital use of small-volume resuscitation led to significantly greater decrease of BE and pH values. A portable blood gas analyzer was found to be a useful tool in pre-hospital monitoring for trauma resuscitation. © 2010 Jousi et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.




Jousi, M., Reitala, J., Lund, V., Katila, A., & Leppäniemi, A. (2010). The role of pre-hospital blood gas analysis in trauma resuscitation. World Journal of Emergency Surgery, 5(1).

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