Critical care air transportation of the severely injured: Does long distance transport adversely affect survival?

Terence D. Valenzuela, Elizabeth A. Criss, Michael K. Copass, Gregory K. Luna, Charles L. Rice

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

21 Scopus citations

Abstract

Civilian aeromedical transportation systems, both fixed and rotary wing, have proliferated since the middle 1970s. However, outcome data substantiating the benefit of these services have been slow in coming. From February 22, 1982, through March 5, 1984, Airlift Northwest transported 118 trauma patients (aged 15 years and older) an average distance of 340 miles (range, 100 to 800 miles) with fixed-wing aircraft. The in-hospital mortality for this group was 19% compared with 18% for a comparable group of trauma patients who were ground-transported from within the city limits of Seattle, Washington. The two groups did not differ significantly in age, Injury Severity Score, or Glasgow Coma Score. These results suggest that some part of the clinical benefit of a regional trauma center may be extended up to 800 miles with no increase in transport-related mortality.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)169-172
Number of pages4
JournalAnnals of emergency medicine
Volume19
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1990

Keywords

  • aeromedical transport
  • mortality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Emergency Medicine

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