The major trauma management study: An analysis of the efficacy of current trauma care

Peter Danne, Graeme Brazenor, Richard Cade, Peter Crossley, Mark Fitzgerald, Peter Gregory, Diane Kowal, Lynette Lovell, Peter Morley, Mark Smith, Russell Taylor, Stephen Walker

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    Background: An audit of the management and outcome of major trauma patients was carried out to determine ways in which the system of care may be improved. Methods: The Major Trauma Management Study (MTMS) collected data prospectively on all consecutively admitted major trauma patients at eight major hospitals during a 12-month period. Outcome was studied using trauma and injury severity score (TRISS) and a severity characterization of trauma (ASCOT) analyses, as well as a preventable outcome analysis, which looked at survivors with complications or with a Glasgow Coma Score < 15 on discharge from hospital as well as studying deaths. Results: The group of 859 patients was more severely injured than most described previously, with a mortality of 14.8% and a mean injury severity score of 19.8. Formal ASCOT analysis indicated 2.25% fewer survivors than would be predicted by Major Trauma Outcome Study norms. Extrapolating the TRISS and ASCOT process to include those patients with missing data, and then comparing groups of matched severity with the norms, gave no statistically different outcome in the MTMS group of patients. Preventable outcome analysis revealed rates of preventable and potentially preventable (P/PP) outcomes of 32% among deaths and 8% among survivors. The types of management deficiencies responsible for P/PP outcomes are identified. Conclusions: The points of deficiency in a system of care have been identified, and the development of an integrated trauma system in Victoria, based upon these facts, is recommended. Children, the elderly, patients with head injuries and patients being transferred between hospitals would benefit from improvements to the system of care. The calculation of efficacy rate (0.95 for the MTMS patients) is recommended to accurately assess the system of care. Preventable Outcome Analysis is more relevant to auditing a system of trauma care in detail, than is ASCOT or TRISS. The MTMS has refined and defined the process so that it is reproducible in further comparative studies.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)50-57
    Number of pages8
    JournalAustralian and New Zealand Journal of Surgery
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 16 Jan 1998


    • ASCOT
    • Efficacy rate
    • Integrated trauma system
    • Major trauma
    • Preventable outcome analysis
    • TRISS

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