A characterization of trauma laparotomies in a scandinavian setting: an observational study


BACKGROUND: Despite treatment advances, trauma laparotomy continuous to be associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Most of the literature originates from high volume centers, whereas patient characteristics and outcomes in a Scandinavian setting is not well described. The objective of this study is to characterize treatments and outcomes of patients undergoing trauma laparotomy in a Scandinavian setting and compare this to international reports.

METHODS: A retrospective study was performed in the Copenhagen University Hospital, Rigshospitalet (CUHR). All patients undergoing a trauma laparotomy within the first 24 h of admission between January 1st 2019 and December 31st 2020 were included. Collected data included demographics, trauma mechanism, injuries, procedures performed and outcomes.

RESULTS: A total of 1713 trauma patients were admitted to CUHR of which 98 patients underwent trauma laparotomy. Penetrating trauma accounted for 16.6% of the trauma population and 66.3% of trauma laparotomies. Median time to surgery after arrival at the trauma center (TC) was 12 min for surgeries performed in the Emergency Department (ED) and 103 min for surgeries performed in the operating room (OR). A total of 14.3% of the procedures were performed in the ED. A damage control strategy (DCS) approach was chosen in 18.4% of cases. Our rate of negative laparotomies was 17.3%. We found a mortality rate of 8.2%. The total median length of stay was 6.1 days.

CONCLUSION: The overall rates, findings, and outcomes of trauma laparotomies in this Danish cohort is comparable to reports from similar Western European trauma systems.

Original languageEnglish
Article number43
JournalScandinavian Journal of Trauma, Resuscitation and Emergency Medicine
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)43
Publication statusPublished - 8 Jul 2022


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