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J R Nav Med Serv. 2013;99(1):16-9.

The sensitivity of pre-hospital and in-hospital tools for the identification of major trauma patients presenting to a major trauma centre.

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1
Emergency Department, Derriford Hospital, Plymouth, UK.

Abstract

The identification of major trauma patients before arrival in hospital allows the activation of an appropriate trauma response. The Wessex triage tool (WTT) uses a combination of anatomical injury assessment and physiological criteria to identify patients with major trauma suitable for triage direct to a major trauma centre (MTC), and has been adopted by the South-West Peninsula Trauma Network (PTN). A retrospective database review, using the Trauma Audit Research Network (TARN) database, was undertaken to identify a population of patients presenting to Derriford Hospital with an injury severity score (ISS) >15. The WTT was then applied to this population to identify the sensitivity of the tool. The sensitivity of the WTT at identifying patients with an ISS> 15 was 53%. One of the reasons for this finding was that elderly patients who are defined as having major trauma due to the nature of their injuries, but who did not have a mechanism to suggest they had sustained major trauma (such as a fall from standing height), were not identified by these triage tools. The implications of this are discussed.

PMID:
23691858
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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