JOURNAL ARTICLE
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Packing and re-exploration for patients with nonhepatic injuries.

We retrospectively reviewed the clinical records of 11 patients admitted to the trauma service at Kings County Hospital who underwent packing and temporary closure for severe nonhepatic injuries. The mean ISS was 37 and the mean Abdominal Trauma Index value was 48. Operative findings included 17 major vascular injuries. Although the mean blood pressure was 105 mm Hg during the procedure, the patients required an average of 17 units of blood and all were acidotic, hypothermic, and coagulopathic. Acidosis persisted in all patients and the mean base excess was -13 at closure. A conscious decision was made to terminate the procedure when surgical bleeding was controlled. Patients were resuscitated and warmed in the ICU and returned to the operating room within 48 hours. Seven of the 11 patients survived. Of the eight patients who survived to return to the operating room, all required gastrointestinal procedures at re-exploration. This preliminary experience supports packing to control coagulopathic bleeding, use of temporary abdominal closure, and further ICU resuscitation with a planned second laparotomy for definitive management of gastrointestinal injuries in patients with severe nonhepatic injuries.

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