The challenge in management of hemorrhagic shock in trauma

Mathews Jacob, Praveen Kumar
Medical Journal, Armed Forces India 2014, 70 (2): 163-9
Transfusion and resuscitation practices in trauma have undergone a sea change over the past decade. New understanding of transfusion physiology and experiences in military trauma over the last decade has identified key factors taken as challenges in trauma. The most important challenge remains acute traumatic coagulopathy (ATC) which sets in early after a trauma and spirals the patient into shock and continued bleeding. World wide trauma is the leading cause of mortality. More than 6 million deaths occur due to trauma out of which 20% are due to uncontrollable bleeding. Out of the hospital admissions in trauma 20% develop coagulopathy. Mortality is three to four times higher in a patient with coagulopathy and thus prevention and correction of coagulopathy is the central goal of the management of hemorrhagic shock in trauma. Damage control resuscitation (DCR), a strategy combining the techniques of permissive hypotension, hemostatic resuscitation and damage control surgery has been widely adopted as the preferred method of resuscitation in patients with haemorrhagic shock. The over-riding goals of DCR are to mitigate metabolic acidosis, hypothermia and coagulopathy, This article looks at the importance of acute traumatic coagulopathy, its etiology, diagnosis, effects and resuscitation strategies to prevent it and to see the background behind this shift.

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