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September 2022
Ronny Ben-Avi MD, Alex Sorkin MD, Roy Nadler MD, Avishai M. Tsur MD, Shaul Gelikas MD MBA, Jacob Chen MD MHA, and Avi Benov MD MHA; and Israel Trauma Group

Background: Chest trauma is among the most common types of trauma, corresponding to 10% of trauma patients admitted to hospitals. In the military setting, thoracic trauma was reported as a significant cause of death. With well-timed treatment, chest trauma is regarded as survivable. Emergency thoracotomy (ET) is considered when the patient with trauma to the chest needs immediate resuscitation. Survival rate is reported as low as 1% in some reports and 20% in others. The survival rate depends on injury mechanism, protocols for intervention, and other decompressive procedures.

Objectives: To determine parameters that may impact survival of ET.

Methods: We conducted a retrospective cohort study to compare prehospital and in-hospital data regarding ET in the emergency department (ED) versus the operating room (OR).

Results: Between 2009 and 2017, 6532 casualties presented to the ED; 1125 with trauma to the chest. Fifty-four of those with chest trauma underwent ET in the hospital (4.8%), 22 (41%) in the ED, and 32 (59%) in the OR. The overall mortality of the ET subgroup was 48%. With regard to thoracotomies, 19/22 of patients (86%) who underwent ET in the ED died compared to 2/28 in the OR (13%).

Conclusions: Utilizing ET after chest trauma with appropriate clinical indications, well-trained personnel, and prompt transportation poses a significant challenge, but may be associated with better survival than that reported previously with military casualties. Adoption of indications and timed allocation to the OR may improve outcomes with chest trauma casualties.

October 2019
Royi Barnea PhD, Lina Voronenko BSc, Lin Zu PhD, Iris Reychav PhD and Yossi Weiss PhD MPH

Background: Surgery is a core activity in hospitals. Operating rooms have some of the most important and vital functions in medical centers. The operating rooms and their staff are a valuable infrastructure resource and their availability and preparedness affect human life and quality of care.

Objectives: To prepare operational suggestions for improving operating room utilization by mapping current working processes in the operating rooms of a large private medical center.

Methods: Data on 23,585 surgeries performed at our medical center between August 2016 and March 2017 were analyzed by various parameters including utilization, capacity, working hours, and surgery delays.

Results: Average operating room utilization was 79%, while 21% was considered lost operating room time. The two major factors that influenced the lost operating room time were the time intervals between planned usage blocks and the partial utilization of operating room time. We calculated that each percent of utilized operating room time translates into 440 surgeries annually, resulting in a potential annual increase in income.

Conclusions: Increasing operating room utilization would result in an improvement of operating room availability and an increased number of procedures. Our analysis shows that operating room utilization in the private healthcare system is efficient compared to the public healthcare system in Israel. Therefore the private healthcare system should be treated as a contributing factor to help lower surgery waiting times and release bottlenecks, rather than being perceived as contributing to inequality.

August 2004
E. Soudry and M. Stein

The management of uncontrolled bleeding in trauma patients is difficult in the prehospital setting, especially when transfer time to a care facility is prolonged. The goal of treatment is to stabilize the patient until surgery can be performed. In modern practice, the major aspects of optimal patient stabilization are the timing and volume of resuscitation and the use of blood products. The main problems are the logistics of handling the blood products as well as achieving the appropriate endpoint or resuscitation, while balancing the need to maintain blood pressure with the need to avoid deleterious coagulopathy. This work reviews current therapeutic modalities for prehospital management of uncontrolled bleeding trauma patients, namely low volume resuscitation, packed red blood cells, hemoglobin solutions, perfluorocarbons, hypertonic saline solutions, and recombinant activated factor VII.

July 2002
Shmuel C. Shapira, MD and Joshua Shemer
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