Prospective Evaluation of an Extubation Protocol in a Trauma Intensive Care Unit Population
Little data exists regarding extubation protocols in critically injured trauma patients. The objective of the current study was to prospectively examine the impact of implementing an extubation protocol on the outcomes of ventilated trauma patients in a surgical intensive care unit (STICU). Trauma patients admitted to the STICU over a 15-month period at a Level 1 trauma center were prospectively evaluated. The total period was divided into an education and institution period (April 2002–November 2003) and an evaluation period (December 2003–July 2003). Patient demographics, hospital course, complications, and outcomes from period I were compared with those obtained during period II. From April 8, 2002 through July 5, 2003, 69 patients intubated for greater than 24 hours were included in our analysis. Thirty-three were treated during period I and 36 were treated during period II. Both groups were well matched in terms of age, sex, Injury Severity Score, and chest Abbreviated Injury Score. Ventilation days significantly decreased from a mean of 16.3 to 8.2 days (P = 0.04). ICU length of stay also decreased, nearly meeting significance. A rigorously enforced extubation protocol significantly decreased ventilator days in STICU patients. Continued education of health care providers is key to the success of the protocol.
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Document Type: Research Article
Affiliations: From the Virginia Commonwealth University Health System, Medical College of Virginia Hospital and Physicians, Richmond, Virginia
Publication date: May 1, 2006
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