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Pediatr Emerg Care. 2001 Oct;17(5):324-8.

Coagulation testing in pediatric blunt trauma patients.

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Division of Emergency Medicine, Department of Internal Medicine, University of California, Davis, School of Medicine, Sacramento, California 95817-2282, USA.



To determine the prevalence of abnormal coagulation studies and to identify variables associated with markedly elevated coagulation studies in children with blunt trauma.


We reviewed the medical records of all patients < 15 years old hospitalized at a Level 1 trauma center for either blunt head or torso trauma over a 4-year period. Data from each patient's emergency department (ED) presentation were abstracted. ED coagulation studies were defined prior to data analysis as elevated if the international normalized ratio (INR) was > or =1.2 or partial thromboplastin time (PTT) was > or =33.0 seconds and markedly elevated if the INR was > or =1.5 or PTT was > or =40 seconds. Variables associated with markedly elevated coagulation studies in a univariate analysis (P < 0.05) were entered into a backward elimination logistic regression analysis to identify variables independently associated with markedly elevated coagulation studies.


A total of 1082 patients' records were reviewed, and the 830 (77%) patients with coagulation studies obtained composed the study population. Elevated coagulation studies were detected in 232 (28%) patients, and 49 (6%) of these were found to be markedly elevated. In the multivariate analysis, a GCS < or =13 (odds ratio [OR] 8.7, 95% confidence interval [CI] 4.3, 17.7), low systolic blood pressure (OR 4.0, 95% CI 1.6, 9.9), open/multiple bony fractures (OR 2.9, 95% CI 1.4, 6.2), and major tissue wounds (OR 2.8, 95% CI 1.4, 5.6) were independently associated with markedly elevated coagulation studies.


Hospitalized pediatric blunt trauma patients frequently have minor elevations in ED coagulation studies. Marked elevations occur infrequently and are independently associated with a GCS < or =13, low systolic blood pressure, open/multiple bony fractures, and major tissue wounds.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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