Basic Principles of Trauma Care

Yoram Klein, Igor Jeroukhimov, Stephen M. Cohn, Mark Cockburn

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


The modern concept of initial trauma care focuses on the physiological derangements following severe trauma, rather than the specific injuries sustained by the patient. The first priority in the treatment of trauma patients is to establish airway patency, because obstructed upper airway will cause almost immediate hypoxia and respiratory acidosis. In contrast, certain lower extremity injuries are specifically associated with dangerous systemic effects. Every physician who takes care of trauma patients should be acquainted with these injuries and their management. All victims of blunt trauma undergoing urgent intubation should be regarded as having a cervical spine injury until proven otherwise. Preoxygenation should be performed in trauma patients prior to intubation. Cricothyroidotomy is the surgical airway of choice because it is simple, easy to perform, and relatively safe in the trauma setting. Tracheostomy may be required in patients with acute laryngeal trauma in whom placement of a tube through the cricothyroid may complicate existing laryngeal injury.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationLower extremity Trauma
PublisherCRC Press
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9781420016550
ISBN (Print)9780824728656
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2006
Externally publishedYes


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