Impact of a multidisciplinary trauma team on the outcome of acute subdural haematoma

Gilberto Ka Kit Leung, Gloria Kwok Bo Ng, Wendy Ho, Kwan Ngai Hung, Wai Kay Yuen
Injury 2012, 43 (9): 1419-22

INTRODUCTION: To review the outcome of patients with post-traumatic acute subdural haematoma (ASDH) before and after the establishment of a hospital trauma team at a designated trauma centre.

METHOD: A retrospective analysis was conducted on 82 consecutive patients who underwent surgery for post-traumatic ASDH. The 'PRE' and 'POST' groups included patients admitted before and after the establishment of a hospital trauma team, respectively. Injury severity was assessed by the admission Glasgow coma score, imaging findings, and the revised trauma score. Clinical outcome measures were the hospital length of stay and the Glasgow outcome score (GOS) upon hospital discharge.

RESULTS: The overall mortality rate was 53.7%. No significant difference was found between the PRE and POST groups. The mean length of hospital stay was also comparable between the two groups. The functional status of those who survived acute hospital care was significantly better in the POST group. Good outcome (GOS of 4 or 5) was achieved in 66.7% of the survivors in the POST group, compared with 25.0% in the PRE group (p=0.024).

CONCLUSION: Post-traumatic ASDH carried a poor prognosis. The mortality rate and hospital length of stay of patients were not found to be reduced after the establishment of a hospital trauma team. The latter, however, was associated with significantly better functional outcome amongst survivors. Although causality cannot be established due to the multitude of factors which may have affected patient outcome, our findings nonetheless provide further support for the introduction of a multidisciplinary hospital trauma team for the optimal care of trauma patients.

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