A Statewide Analysis of Pediatric Liver Injuries Treated at Adult Versus Pediatric Trauma Centers.

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INTRODUCTION: Hemodynamically normal pediatric trauma patients with solid organ injury receive nonoperative management. Prior research supports that pediatric patients have higher rates of nonoperative management at pediatric trauma centers (PTCs). We sought to evaluate differences in outcomes of pediatric trauma patients with liver injuries. We hypothesized that the type of trauma center (PTC versus adult trauma center [ATC]) would not be associated with any difference in mortality.

METHODS: The Pennsylvania Trauma Outcome Study database was retrospectively queried from 2003 to 2018 for all patients (y) with liver injuries by International Classification of Disease 9 and 10 codes. Patients were categorized based on admission to the PTC or ATC. The primary endpoint was mortality with secondary endpoints being operative intervention and length of stay. Multivariate logistic regressions assessed the adjusted impact on mortality and surgical intervention.

RESULTS: Of the 1600 patients with liver trauma, 607 met inclusion criteria. A total of 78.4% were treated at PTCs. Patients underwent hepatobiliary surgery more frequently at ATCs (11.5% [n = 15] versus 2.74% [n = 13], P < 0.001). Adjusted analysis showed lower odds of surgical intervention for hepatobiliary injuries at PTCs (adjusted odds ratio: 0.17, P = 0.001). There was a decrease in mortality at PTCs versus ATCs (adjusted odds ratio: 0.38, P = 0.032).

CONCLUSIONS: Our statewide analysis showed that pediatric trauma patients with liver injuries treated at ATCs were associated with having higher odds of mortality and higher incidence of operative management for hepatobiliary injuries than those treated at PTCs. In addition, between centers, patients had similar functional status at discharge.


This article was published in Journal of Surgical Research, Volume 272, pages 184-189. Featured cover article.

The published version is available at https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jss.2021.12.022.

Copyright © 2021 Elsevier Inc.

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The Journal of Surgical Research

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