Pathoanatomy and Clinical Correlates of the Immunoinflammatory Response Following Orthopaedic Trauma

Benjamin W. Sears, MD, Michael D. Stover, MD and John Callaci, PhD J Am Acad Orthop Surg, Vol 17, No 4, April 2009,

The natural inflammatory response to major trauma may be associated with the development of a systemic inflammatory state, remote multiorgan failure, and death. Although a controlled inflammatory response is beneficial, an exaggerated response can cause serious adverse systemic effects. Early identification of high-risk patients, based on inflammatory markers and genomic predisposition, should help direct intervention in terms of surgical stabilization and biologic response modification. Currently, two markers of immune reactivity, interleukin-6 and human leukocyte antigen–DR class II molecules, appear to have the most potential for regular use in predicting the clinical course and outcome in trauma patients; however, the ability to measure markers of inflammation is still limited at many hospitals. With improving technology and increasing research interest, understanding of the significance of the immunoinflammatory response system in injured patients will continue to evolve.

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