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Implementation of a Massive Transfusion Protocol

Evaluation of Its Use and Efficacy

Broxton, Shannon DNP, CRNA; Medeiros, Regina DNP, RN; Abuzeid, Adel MD; Peterson, Corey DNP, CRNA; Schumacher, Autumn PhD, RN

doi: 10.1097/JTN.0000000000000350

Massive transfusion protocols (MTPs) allow practitioners to follow a prescribed algorithm for the rapid replacement of blood products during a massive hemorrhage. They function as an established protocol to provide consistent treatment. Once implemented, the MTP must be evaluated to ensure best practice. The purpose of this clinical improvement project was to formally evaluate the use and efficacy of an MTP during its first year of implementation. The specific aims were to (1) determine whether MTP activations were missed; (2) compare outcomes between those patients managed by the MTP and those who were not; and (3) provide recommendations to the institution's stakeholders. A retrospective medical record review was conducted with 101 electronic medical records of adult trauma patients treated over 1 year. Patients were identified to have experienced massive bleeding if their medical record contained 1 of 4 indicators: (1) transfusion of uncrossmatched blood; (2) tranexamic acid administration; (3) transfusion of 4 or more units of packed red blood cells (PRBCs) in 1 hr; and/or (4) transfusion of 10 or more units of PRBCs in 24 hr. While 58 patients experienced massive bleeding, only 16 (28%) were managed using the MTP. Although the non-MTP group received fewer transfused blood products due to higher initial and 24-hr hemoglobin levels, more deaths occurred in this group than in the MTP group. The recommendations were to (1) establish well-defined criteria for MTP activation based on the 4 indicators of massive bleeding and (2) regularly evaluate the use and efficacy of the MTP to ensure positive patient outcomes.

College of Nursing, Augusta University, Augusta, Georgia (Drs Broxton, Peterson, and Schumacher); and Augusta University Medical Center, Augusta, Georgia (Drs Medeiros and Abuzeid).

Correspondence: Shannon Broxton, DNP, CRNA, College of Nursing, Augusta University, 987 St. Sebastian Way, EC-5444, Augusta, GA 30912 (

All authors have no disclosures to report.

Copyright © 2018 by the Society of Trauma Nurses.