D. Bose, and N.C. Tejwani
New York University Medical Center, 550 First Avenue, New York, NY 10016, USA
Summary Management of polytrauma patients has changed considerably in recent years. This is in keeping with the developments that have occurred in the fields of fracture fixation techniques and intensive care.
Prior to the 1970s, patients with multiple injuries were treated non-operatively, as it was believed that they were too ill to withstand surgery. Around this time, literature appeared to suggest that these patients had high rates of complications as a result of prolonged recumbency. Fracture fixation techniques were also developing rapidly, and these events led to the advent of early fracture stabilisation of multiply injured patients, known as early total care.
In the following decade, the surgical world came to recognise that early stabilisation of skeletal injuries produced poor results in certain patients. The concept of damage control surgery was introduced for multiply injured patients. The current era may give way to new methods as our understanding of the pathophysiology of polytrauma improves.
Injury Volume 37, Issue 1 , January 2006, Pages 20-28.