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Millions of people visit US national parks annually to engage in recreational wilderness activities, which can occasionally result in traumatic injuries that require timely, high-level care. However, no study to date has specifically examined timely access to trauma centers from national parks. This study aimed to examine the accessibility of trauma care from national parks by calculating the travel time by ground and air from each park to its nearest trauma center. Using these calculations, the percentage of parks by census region with timely access to a trauma center was determined.
This was a cross-sectional study analyzing travel times by ground and air transport between national parks and their closest adult advanced trauma center (ATC) in 2018. A list of parks was compiled from the National Parks Service (NPS) website, and the location of trauma centers from the 2018 National Emergency Department Inventory (NEDI)-USA database. Ground and air transport times were calculated using Google Maps and ArcGIS, with medians and interquartile ranges reported by US census region. Percentage of parks by region with timely trauma center access—defined as access within 60 minutes of travel time—were determined based on these calculated travel times.
In 2018, 83% of national parks had access to an adult ATC within 60 minutes of air travel, while only 26% had timely access by ground. Trauma center access varied by region, with median travel times highest in the West for both air and ground transport. At a national level, national parks were unequally distributed, with the West housing the most parks of all regions.
While most national parks had timely access to a trauma center by air travel, significant gaps in access remain for ground, the extent of which varies greatly by region. To improve the accessibility of trauma center expertise from national parks, the study highlights the potential that increased implementation of trauma telehealth in emergency departments (EDs) may have in bridging these gaps.
The increase in mortality and total prehospital time (TPT) seen in Qatar appear to be realistic. However, existing reports on the influence of TPT on mortality in trauma patients are conflicting. This study aimed to explore the impact of prehospital time on the in-hospital outcomes.
A retrospective analysis of data on patients transferred alive by Emergency Medical Services (EMS) and admitted to Hamad Trauma Center (HTC) of Hamad General Hospital (HGH; Doha, Qatar) from June 2017 through May 2018 was conducted. This study was centered on the National Trauma Registry database. Patients were categorized based on the trauma triage activation and prehospital intervals, and comparative analysis was performed.
A total of 1,455 patients were included, of which nearly one-quarter of patients required urgent and life-saving care at a trauma center (T1 activations). The overall TPT was 70 minutes and the on-scene time (OST) was 24 minutes. When compared to T2 activations, T1 patients were more likely to have been involved in road traffic injuries (RTIs); experienced head and chest injuries; presented with higher Injury Severity Score (ISS: median = 22); and had prolonged OST (27 minutes) and reduced TPT (65 minutes; P = .001). Prolonged OST was found to be associated with higher mortality in T1 patients, whereas TPT was not associated.
In-hospital mortality was independent of TPT but associated with longer OST in severely injured patients. The survival benefit may extend beyond the golden hour and may depend on the injury characteristics, prehospital, and in-hospital settings.
Prehospital vital signs are used to triage trauma patients to mobilize appropriate resources and personnel prior to patient arrival in the emergency department (ED). Due to inherent challenges in obtaining prehospital vital signs, concerns exist regarding their accuracy and ability to predict first ED vitals.
The objective of this study was to determine the correlation between prehospital and initial ED vitals among patients meeting criteria for highest levels of trauma team activation (TTA). The hypothesis was that in a medical system with short transport times, prehospital and first ED vital signs would correlate well.
Patients meeting criteria for highest levels of TTA at a Level I trauma center (2008-2018) were included. Those with absent or missing prehospital vital signs were excluded. Demographics, injury data, and prehospital and first ED vital signs were abstracted. Prehospital and initial ED vital signs were compared using Bland-Altman intraclass correlation coefficients (ICC) with good agreement as >0.60; fair as 0.40-0.60; and poor as <0.40).
After exclusions, 15,320 patients were included. Mean age was 39 years (range 0-105) and 11,622 patients (76%) were male. Mechanism of injury was blunt in 79% (n = 12,041) and mortality was three percent (n = 513). Mean transport time was 21 minutes (range 0-1,439). Prehospital and first ED vital signs demonstrated good agreement for Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) score (ICC 0.79; 95% CI, 0.77-0.79); fair agreement for heart rate (HR; ICC 0.59; 95% CI, 0.56-0.61) and systolic blood pressure (SBP; ICC 0.48; 95% CI, 0.46-0.49); and poor agreement for pulse pressure (PP; ICC 0.32; 95% CI, 0.30-0.33) and respiratory rate (RR; ICC 0.13; 95% CI, 0.11-0.15).
Despite challenges in prehospital assessments, field GCS, SBP, and HR correlate well with first ED vital signs. The data show that these prehospital measurements accurately predict initial ED vitals in an urban setting with short transport times. The generalizability of these data to settings with longer transport times is unknown.
Obtaining intravenous (IV) access in patients in hemorrhagic shock is often difficult and prolonged. Failed IV attempts delay life-saving treatment. Intraosseous (IO) access may often be obtained faster than IV access. Albumin (5%) is an option for prehospital volume expansion because of the absence of interference with coagulation and platelet function.
There are limited data comparing the performance of IO and IV administered 5% albumin. The aims of this study were to compare the effects of tibial IO (TIO) and IV administration of 500 mL of 5% albumin on infusion time and hemodynamic measurements of heart rate (HR), mean arterial pressure (MAP), cardiac output (CO), and stroke volume (SV) in a swine model of hemorrhagic shock.
Sixteen male swine were divided into two groups: TIO and IV. All subjects were anesthetized and a Class III hemorrhage was achieved by exsanguination of 31% of estimated blood volume (EBV) from a femoral artery catheter. Following exsanguination, 500 mL of 5% albumin was administered under pressurized infusion (300 mmHg) by the TIO or IV route and infusion time was recorded. Hemodynamic measurements of HR, MAP, CO, and SV were collected before and after exsanguination and every 20 seconds for 180 seconds during 5% albumin infusion.
An independent t-test determined that IV 5% albumin infusion was significantly faster compared to IO (P=.01). Mean infusion time for TIO was seven minutes 35 seconds (SD=two minutes 44 seconds) compared to four minutes 32 seconds (SD=one minute 08 seconds) in the IV group. Multivariate Analysis of Variance was performed on hemodynamic data collected during the 5% albumin infusion. Analyses indicated there were no significant differences between the TIO and IV groups relative to MAP, CO, HR, or SV (P>.05).
While significantly longer to infuse 5% albumin by the TIO route, the longer TIO infusion time may be negated as IO devices can be placed more quickly compared to repeated IV attempts. The lack of significant difference between the TIO and IV routes relative to hemodynamic measures indicate the TIO route is a viable route for the infusion of 5% albumin in a swine model of Class III hemorrhage.
MuirSL, SheppardLB, Maika-WilsonA, BurgertJM, Garcia-BlancoJ, JohnsonAD, CoynerJL. A Comparison of the Effects of Intraosseous and Intravenous 5% Albumin on Infusion Time and Hemodynamic Measures in a Swine Model of Hemorrhagic Shock. Prehosp Disaster Med.2016;31(4):436–442.
Do-not-resuscitate (DNR) orders may be written if cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) would be physiologically futile, or at the request of patients who feel that CPR would result in poorer quality of life. Pre-hospital DNR policies have emerged recently and serve three primary purposes: to provide continued respect for patient autonomy following hospital discharge, prevent futile resuscitation efforts in the field, and protect the well-being of emergency medical service (EMS) personnel. This chapter explains this concept citing the case study of a 67-year-old male with oxygen-dependent COPD requiring a series of electroconvulsive therapies (ECT) for severe depression refractory to medical therapy. Patients with preexisting DNR orders often require anesthesia for surgical procedures necessitated by the need to improve quality of life. The American Society of Anesthesiologists and the American College of Surgeons have drafted guidelines for the management of the patient with a presurgical DNR order.
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