Prehospital whole blood resuscitation prevents coagulopathy and improves acid-base status at hospital arrival in a nonhuman primate hemorrhagic shock model.

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Emergency Medicine, Critical Care Medicine

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MeSH Headings

Animals, Shock, Hemorrhagic, Resuscitation, Blood Coagulation Disorders, Hospitals, Emergency Medical Services, Primates


BACKGROUND: Hemorrhage remains the primary cause of preventable death in civilian and military trauma. The Committee on Tactical Combat Casualty Care recommends prehospital (PH) resuscitation with whole blood (WB). However, 6% hetastarch in lactated electrolyte (HEX) and crystalloids are more commonly available and used for PH resuscitation in military and civilian environments, respectively. The mechanistic benefits of PH WB resuscitation have not been well studied and remain to be elucidated.

STUDY DESIGN AND METHODS: The aim of this study was to evaluate the differences in simulated PH WB and HEX resuscitation, specifically with regards to coagulation, physiologic, and metabolic outcomes to better elucidate the mechanistic benefits of WB. In a randomized study, the physiologic, coagulation, and metabolic responses to simulated PH WB (n = 12) or HEX (n = 12) were evaluated in a nonhuman primate model of severe polytraumatic hemorrhagic shock.

RESULTS: Notable findings included 1) equivalence of shock reversal between simulated PH WB and HEX treatment groups as determined by hemodynamics and base deficit and 2) prevention of coagulopathy at simulated hospital arrival with initial WB resuscitation as determined by viscoelastic and plasmatic coagulation assays.

CONCLUSION: The major benefit of WB, as compared to HEX, in simulated PH resuscitation appears to be prevention of coagulopathy at hospital arrival. Both fluids effectively reversed shock in this model, implying that efficacious provision preload (cardiac output support and hence oxygen delivery) and coagulation proteins (prevention of coagulopathy) are mechanisms underlying WB's effectiveness in early resuscitation of hemorrhagic shock.



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