The splenic injury outcomes trial: An American Association for the Surgery of Trauma multi-institutional study

Ben L. Zarzaur, Rosemary Kozar, John G. Myers, Jeffrey A. Claridge, Thomas M. Scalea, Todd A. Neideen, Adrian A. Maung, Louis Alarcon, Alain Corcos, Andrew Kerwin, Raul Coimbra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND Delayed splenic hemorrhage after nonoperative management (NOM) of blunt splenic injury (BSI) is a feared complication, particularly in the outpatient setting. Significant resources, including angiography (ANGIO), are used in an effort to prevent delayed splenectomy (DS). No prospective, long-term data exist to determine the actual risk of splenectomy. The purposes of this trial were to ascertain the 180-day risk of splenectomy after 24 hours of NOM of BSI and to determine factors related to splenectomy. METHODS Eleven Level I trauma centers participated in this prospective observational study. Adult patients achieving 24 hours of NOM of their BSI were eligible. Patients were followed up for 180 days. Demographic, physiologic, radiographic, injury-related information, and spleen-related interventions were recorded. Bivariate and multivariable analyses were used to determine factors associated with DS. RESULTS A total of 383 patients were enrolled. Twelve patients (3.1%) underwent in-hospital splenectomy between 24 hours and 9 days after injury. Of 366 discharged with a spleen, 1 (0.27%) required readmission for DS on postinjury Day 12. No Grade I injuries experienced DS. The splenectomy rate after 24 hours of NOM was 1.5 per 1,000 patient-days. Only extravasation from the spleen at time of admission (ADMIT-BLUSH) was associated with splenectomy (odds ratio, 3.6; 95% confidence interval, 1.4-12.4). Of patients with ADMIT-BLUSH (n = 49), 17 (34.7%) did not have ANGIO with embolization (EMBO), and 2 of those (11.8%) underwent splenectomy; 32 (65.3%) underwent ANGIO with EMBO, and 2 of those (6.3%, p = 0.6020 compared with no ANGIO with EMBO) required splenectomy. CONCLUSION Splenectomy after 24 hours of NOM is rare. After the initial 24 hours, no additional interventions are warranted for patients with Grade I injuries. For Grades II to V, close observation as an inpatient or outpatient is indicated for 10 days to 14 days. ADMIT-BLUSH is a strong predictor of DS and should lead to close observation or earlier surgical intervention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)335-342
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 5 2015


  • Spleen Injury
  • blunt spleen injury
  • blunt spleen injury angiography
  • blunt spleen injury splenectomy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine


Dive into the research topics of 'The splenic injury outcomes trial: An American Association for the Surgery of Trauma multi-institutional study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this