Annals of Surgery

Skip Navigation LinksHome > October 2008 - Volume 248 - Issue 4 > Early Aggressive Use of Fresh Frozen Plasma Does Not Improve...
Annals of Surgery:
doi: 10.1097/SLA.0b013e31818990ed
Original Articles

Early Aggressive Use of Fresh Frozen Plasma Does Not Improve Outcome in Critically Injured Trauma Patients

Scalea, Thomas M. MD; Bochicchio, Kelly M. RN, BSN, MS; Lumpkins, Kim MD; Hess, John R. MD, MPH; Dutton, Richard MD; Pyle, Anne RN, BSN, MS; Bochicchio, Grant V. MD, MPH

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Objectives: Recent data from Iraq supporting early aggressive use of fresh frozen plasma (FFP) in a 1:1 ratio to packed red blood cells (PRBCs) has led many civilian trauma centers to adopt this resource intensive strategy.

Methods: Prospective data were collected on 806 consecutive trauma patients admitted to the intensive care unit over 2 years. Patients were stratified by PRBC:FFP transfusion ratio over the first 24 hours. Stepwise regression models were performed controlling for age, gender, mechanism of injury, injury severity, and acute physiology and chronic health evaluation (APACHE) 2 score to determine if early aggressive use of PRBC:FFP improved outcome.

Results: Seventy-seven percent of patients were male (N = 617) and 85% sustained blunt injury (n = 680). Mean age, injury severity score (ISS), and APACHE score were 43 ± 20 years, 29 ± 13, and 13 ± 7, respectively. Mean number of PRBCs and FFP transfused were 7.7 ± 12 U, 6 U, and 5 ± 12 U, respectively. Three hundred sixty-five (45%) patients were transfused in the first 24 hours. Sixty-eight percent (n = 250) of them received both PRBCs and FFP. Analyzing these patients by stepwise regression controlling for all significant variables, the PRBC:FFP ratio did not predict intensive care unit days, hospital days, or mortality even in patients who received massive transfusion (≥10 U). Furthermore, there was no significant difference in outcome when comparing patients who had a 1:1 PRBC:FFP ratio with those who did not receive any FFP.

Conclusion: Early and aggressive use of FFP does not improve outcome after civilian injury. This may reflect inherent differences compared with military injury; however, this practice should be reevaluated.

© 2008 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.


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