[Interdisciplinary management of trauma patients : Update 3 years after implementation of the S3 guidelines on treatment of patients with severe and multiple injuries]

B Donaubauer, J Fakler, A Gries, U X Kaisers, C Josten, M Bernhard
Der Anaesthesist 2014, 63 (11): 852-64

BACKGROUND: The recommendations still have to be implemented 3 years after publication of the S3 guidelines on the treatment of patients with severe and multiple injuries.

AIM: This article reiterates some of the essential core statements of the S3 guidelines and also gives an overview of new scientific studies.

MATERIAL AND METHODS: In a selective literature search new studies on airway management, traumatic cardiac arrest, shock classification, coagulation therapy, whole-body computed tomography, air rescue and trauma centers were identified and are discussed in the light of the S3 guideline recommendations.

RESULTS: The recommendations on airway management are up to date; however, recommendations on difficult airway evaluation tools, e.g. the LEMON law, should be included. The first pass success (i.e. intubation success at the first attempt) must be considered as a quality marker in the future. Video laryngoscopy is identified as a leading airway procedure in order to reach this aim. Recently estimated learning curves for endotracheal intubation and supraglottic airway devices should be implemented in qualification statements. Life-saving emergency interventions have to be performed in the prehospital setting as they do not prolong the complete treatment period for severely injured patients up to discharge from the resuscitation room. The outcome of patients suffering from traumatic cardiac arrest is better than expected. Recently developed algorithms for trauma patients have to be implemented. The prehospital trauma life support (PHTLS) and advanced trauma life support (ATLS) shock classification does not reflect the clinical reality; therefore, lactate, lactate clearance and base deficit should be used for evaluating the shock state in the resuscitation room. Concerning coagulation therapy, tranexamic acid is easy to administer, safe and effective as an antifibrinolytic therapy and should not be restricted to the most severely injured patients. Numerous studies have shown the positive effect of whole-body computed tomography on treatment time and outcome; however, clear indications for the use of whole-body computed tomography are lacking. Further investigations supported the positive effects of air rescue on the treatment outcome of trauma patients.

CONCLUSION: The recommendations on interdisciplinary trauma management contained in the S3 guidelines on the treatment of patients with severe and multiple injuries should be implemented into the clinical routine. Additionally, the knowledge gained from more recent scientific studies is necessary for anesthetists and emergency physicians to be able to adequately implement the core statements of the S3 guidelines for the treatment of patients with severe and multiple injuries.

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