Advanced life support in ambulances doesn't benefit trauma patients

Apr 21, 2008

New research from the Ontario Prehospital Advanced Life Support (OPALS) project shows there is no benefit — and perhaps harm — to providing advanced life support to patients with trauma injuries prior to transport to hospital.

The third study from the OPALS project — likely the world’s most important research into the care provided to patients before they reach hospital — evaluated outcomes of patients with major traumatic injuries before and after system-wide implementation of prehospital advanced life-support programs in 17 cities. The study found that, among the 1373 patients who received basic life support and the 1494 who received advanced life support subsequent to experiencing major trauma, there was no difference (81.1% vs. 81.8% respectively) in the rate of survival to hospital discharge.

"Our findings support those who believe that definitive trauma care is best provided in the operating room and that prehospital interventions may be associated with increased complications or may delay transfer to hospital," write study authors Dr. Ian Stiell and colleagues.

The authors conclude that emergency medical services should "carefully reevaluate the indications for and applications of prehospital advanced life-support measures for patients with major trauma.

Source: Canadian Medical Association Journal

Explore further: Conjoined Brazilian twin dies after surgery

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Study shows troubling rise in use of animals in experiments

6 hours ago

Despite industry claims of reduced animal use as well as federal laws and policies aimed at reducing the use of animals, the number of animals used in leading U.S. laboratories increased a staggering 73 percent from 1997 ...

NY surveying banks on cyber security defenses

8 hours ago

(AP)—New York financial regulators are considering tougher cyber security requirements for banks to mandate more complex computer sign-ins and certifications from the contractors of their cyber defenses, the state's top ...

Life-saving train design is rarely used

9 hours ago

(AP)—Nearly a decade ago, the U.S. secretary of transportation stood at the site of a horrendous commuter train crash near downtown Los Angeles and called for the adoption of a new train car design that ...

Climate change may flatten famed surfing waves

9 hours ago

On a summer day in 1885, three Hawaiian princes surfed at the mouth of the San Lorenzo River on crudely constructed boards made from coastal redwoods, bringing the sport to the North American mainland.

Recommended for you

Seth Mnookin on vaccination and public health

2 hours ago

Seth Mnookin, an assistant professor of science writing and associate director of MIT's Graduate Program in Science Writing, is the author of "The Panic Virus: The True Story Behind the Vaccine-Autism Controversy" ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.