Incidence of hyperoxia in trauma patients receiving pre-hospital emergency anaesthesia: results of a 5-year retrospective analysis

P. Leitch, A. L. Hudson, J. E. Griggs*, R. Stolmeijer, R. M. Lyon, E. ter Avest

*Corresponding author for this work

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    Abstract

    Background 

    Previous studies have demonstrated an association between hyperoxia and increased mortality in various patient groups. Critically unwell and injured patients are routinely given high concentration oxygen in the pre-hospital phase of care. We aim to investigate the incidence of hyperoxia in major trauma patients receiving pre-hospital emergency anesthesia (PHEA) in the pre-hospital setting and determine factors that may help guide clinicians with pre-hospital oxygen administration in these patients.

    Methods

    A retrospective cohort study was performed of all patients who received PHEA by a single helicopter emergency medical service (HEMS) between 1 October 2014 and 1 May 2019 and who were subsequently transferred to one major trauma centre (MTC). Patient and treatment factors were collected from the electronic patient records of the HEMS service and the MTC. Hyperoxia was defined as a PaO2 > 16 kPA on the first arterial blood gas analysis upon arrival in the MTC.

    Results

    On arrival in the MTC, the majority of the patients (90/147, 61.2%) had severe hyperoxia, whereas 30 patients (20.4%) had mild hyperoxia and 26 patients (19.7%) had normoxia. Only 1 patient (0.7%) had hypoxia. The median PaO2 on the first arterial blood gas analysis (ABGA) after HEMS handover was 36.7 [IQR 18.5-52.2] kPa, with a range of 7.0-86.0 kPa. SpO(2) pulse oximetry readings before handover were independently associated with the presence of hyperoxia. An SpO(2) >= 97% was associated with a significantly increased odds of hyperoxia (OR 3.99 [1.58-10.08]), and had a sensitivity of 86.7% [79.1-92.4], a specificity of 37.9% [20.7-57.8], a positive predictive value of 84.5% [70.2-87.9] and a negative predictive value of 42.3% [27.4-58.7] for the presence of hyperoxemia.

    Conclusion

    Trauma patients who have undergone PHEA often have profound hyperoxemia upon arrival at hospital. In the pre-hospital setting, where arterial blood gas analysis is not readily available a titrated approach to oxygen therapy should be considered to reduce the incidence of potentially harmful tissue hyperoxia.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number134
    Number of pages8
    JournalScandinavian journal of trauma resuscitation & emergency medicine
    Volume29
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 10-Sep-2021

    Keywords

    • Hyperoxia
    • Hyperoxemia
    • Ventilation
    • Trauma
    • Emergency medical services
    • Oxygen therapy
    • Pre-hospital anesthesia
    • ARTERIAL HYPEROXIA
    • BLOOD-FLOW
    • OXYGEN
    • OUTCOMES

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