Mechanism of Injury Makes A Difference In Risk of Venous Thromboembolism

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Charles A. Karcutskie IV, MD, MA

Postdoctoral Research Fellow
University of Miami Miller School of Medicine
Department of Surgery
Divisions of Trauma, Surgical Critical Care, and Burns

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Our research group at the Ryder Trauma Center have recently done several studies showing various differences in outcomes and risk based on mechanism of injury. Additionally, venous thromboembolism (VTE) is another topic that our group has focused on in the past several years. Because trauma patients are inherently at a higher risk for VTE due to the nature of their injury, we questioned whether the most important risk factors for VTE were different after blunt or penetrating trauma. At our institution, we assess VTE risk with the Greenfield Risk Assessment Profile, which is a list of several risk factors that each have weight toward an overall risk score. We took these risk factors and analyzed them individually based on mechanism of injury. We found that the factors that contribute to the VTE risk are different based on injury mechanism: After blunt trauma, transfusion status, neurologic status, and pelvic fracture contributed most. After penetrating trauma, vascular injury, severe abdominal injury, and age 40-59 years contributed most. This tells us that mechanism of injury may need to be incorporated into the risk assessment in order to discover the highest risk patients.

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