Blood products and procoagulants in traumatic bleeding: use and evidence.

Wong, H. et al. Current Opinion in Critical Care. Published online: October 15, 2016

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Purpose of review: Death from uncontrolled haemorrhage is one of the leading causes of trauma-related mortality and is potentially preventable. Advances in understanding the mechanisms of trauma-induced coagulopathy (TIC) have focused attention on the role of blood products and procoagulants in mitigating the sequelae of TIC and how these therapies can be improved.

Recent findings: A host of preclinical and clinical studies have evaluated blood product availability and efficacy in trauma. Recently published randomized controlled trials have investigated the ratio of platelet:plasma:red cell transfusion and the role of early cryoprecipitate in trauma. Demand for readily available plasma has led to changes particularly in the use of thawed group A plasma. Furthermore, ex-vivo and early clinical work has demonstrated variations in the haemostatic activity of different plasma, platelet and whole blood products. A number of multicentre trials are in progress aiming to answer key questions regarding tranexamic acid, procoagulant factor and fibrinogen concentrates and their effect on trauma outcomes.

Summary: There are promising results from ex-vivo studies in manufacturing and storage of blood products to optimize haemostatic activity and availability, particularly with alternative plasma and platelet products and whole blood. There is an urgent need for these products needs to be tested prospectively.

Read the abstract here

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