Z Orthop Unfall
DOI: 10.1055/a-1007-2092
Original Article/Originalarbeit
Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York

Spinal Immobilization in the Trauma Room – a Survey-Based Analysis at German Level I Trauma Centers

Article in several languages: English | deutsch
Andreas Gather
Department of Trauma Surgery and Orthopaedics, BG Klinik Ludwigshafen
,
Elena Spancken
Department of Trauma Surgery and Orthopaedics, BG Klinik Ludwigshafen
,
Matthias Münzberg
Department of Trauma Surgery and Orthopaedics, BG Klinik Ludwigshafen
,
Paul Alfred Grützner
Department of Trauma Surgery and Orthopaedics, BG Klinik Ludwigshafen
,
Michael Kreinest
Department of Trauma Surgery and Orthopaedics, BG Klinik Ludwigshafen
› Author Affiliations
Further Information

Publication History

Publication Date:
21 October 2019 (online)

Abstract

Background Spinal immobilization is a standard procedure in daily out-of-hospital emergency care. Homogenous recommendations concerning the immobilization of trauma patients during the first therapy in the emergency department do not exist. The aim of the current study was the analysis of the existing strategies concerning spinal immobilization in German level I trauma centers by an internet-based survey.

Materials and Methods The current study is a survey-based analysis of the current strategies concerning spinal immobilization in all 107 level I trauma centers in Germany. The internet-based survey consists of 6 items asking about immobilization in the emergency department.

Results The return rate was 47.7%. In 14 (28.6%) level I trauma centers the patients remained immobilized on the immobilization tool used by the professional emergency care providers. In 19 (38.8%) level I trauma centers the patients were transferred to a stretcher with a soft positioning mattress on it. Patient transfer to a spineboard or to a TraumaMattress was performed in 11 (22.4%) and 7 (14.3%) level I trauma centers, respectively. Trauma patients were never transferred to a vacuum mattress. Cervical spine protection was most of the time performed by a cervical collar (n = 48; 98.0%). In general, the surveyʼs participants were mainly satisfied (mean = 84/100) with the current strategy of spinal immobilization. The satisfaction was best if the spineboard is used.

Discussion Patient positioning during initial emergency therapy in the emergency department of German level I trauma centers is highly heterogenous. Besides complete full body immobilization, also the lack of any immobilization was reported by the surveyʼs participants.