Journal of Emergencies, Trauma, and Shock
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Year : 2011  |  Volume : 4  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 37-41

Initial systolic blood pressure and ongoing internal bleeding following torso trauma

1 Department of Surgery, Monmouth Medical Center Long Branch, NJ, USA
2 Department of Biostatistics, Jersey Shore University Medical Center Neptune NJ, USA
3 Department of Surgery, Division of Trauma and Surgery Critical Care, Jersey Shore University Medical Center, Neptune NJ, USA

Correspondence Address:
Nasim Ahmed
Department of Surgery, Division of Trauma and Surgery Critical Care, Jersey Shore University Medical Center, Neptune NJ
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0974-2700.76833

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Objective : Recent studies have suggested that an initial systolic blood pressure (SBP) in the range of 90-110 mmHg in a trauma patient may be indicative of hypoperfusion and is associated with poor patient outcome. However, the use of initial SBP as a surrogate for predicting internal bleeding is yet to be validated. The purpose of this study was to assess the presenting SBPs in patients with torso trauma and evidence of ongoing internal hemorrhage. Setting and Design : This was a retrospective chart review conducted at the Level II Trauma Center. Materials and Methods : Adult patients who sustained trauma and underwent chest and/or abdominal computed tomography (CT) scans and angiography were included in the study. Demographic and clinical information was extracted from patients who had CT scan and angiography. Extravasation of contrast material on CT scan and angiography was considered positive for ongoing internal bleeding. Results : From January 2002 through July 2007, a total of 113 consecutive patients were included in this study. Forty-seven patients had evidence of ongoing internal bleeding (41.6%; 95% confidence interval: 32.4%, 51.2%). When comparing patients with and without ongoing bleeding, these two groups were similar in their gender, race, pulse, injury severity score and shock index. However, bleeding patients were typically older [mean (standard deviation): 44.5 (20.5) vs 37.3 (19.1) years; P = 0.051], had a lower initial SBP [116.2 (36.0) vs 130.0 (30.4) mmHg; P = 0.006] and had a higher Glasgow coma scale (GCS) [13.1 (4.0) vs 12.1 (4.4); P = 0.09]. From a multivariate logistic regression analysis, older age (P = 0.046) and lower SBP (P = 0.01) were significantly associated with bleeding, when controlled for gender, race and GCS. Among the 47 patients with ongoing bleeding, only seven patients (15%) had a SBP lower than 90 mmHg and 25 patients (53%) had a SBP higher than or equal to 120 mmHg. The spleen was the most frequently injured organ identified with active bleeding. Conclusions : Initial SBP cannot predict the ongoing internal bleeding.

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