Abstract Introduction: Tourniquets are the standard of care for civilian and military prehospital treatment of massive extremity hemorrhages. Over the past 17 years, multiple military studies have demonstrated rare complications related to tourniquet usage. These studies may not translate well to civilian populations due to differences in baseline health. Experimental studies have demonstrated increased rates of post-traumatic acute kidney injuries (AKIs) in rats with obesity and increased oxidative stress, suggesting that comorbidities may affect AKI incidence with tourniquet usage. Two recently published retrospective studies, focused on the safety of tourniquets deployed within civilian sectors, documented increased incidence of AKI in patients with a prehospital tourniquet as compared to previously published military results. This study aimed to provide descriptive data concerning the association between the use of prehospital tourniquets and AKIs amongst civilian patient populations as AKIs increase mortality in hospitalized patients. Methods: This was a single-center, observational, cross-sectional, pilot study involving chart review of participants presenting to a tertiary Level 1 trauma center. Patient data were extracted from prehospital and hospital electronic medical records. For this study, AKI was defined using the Kidney Disease: Improving Global Outcomes (KDIGO) guidelines. Results: A total of 255 participants were included. Participants with a history of diabetes mellitus had a significantly higher incidence of AKI as compared to those without. Analysis revealed an increased odds of AKI with diabetes in association to the use of a prehospital tourniquet. Participants with diabetes had an increased relative risk of AKI in association to the use of a prehospital tourniquet. The incidence of AKI was statistically higher than what was previous reported in the military population in association with the use of a prehospital tourniquet. Conclusion: The incidence of AKIs was higher than previously reported. Patients with diabetes had an associated higher risk and incidence of sustaining an AKI after the use of a prehospital tourniquet in association with the use of a prehospital tourniquet. This may be due to the known deleterious effects of diabetes mellitus on renal function. This study provides clinically relevant data that warrant further multi-site investigations to further investigate this study’s associated findings and potential causation. It also stresses the need to assess whether renally-impacting environmental and nutritional stressors affect AKI rates amongst military personnel and others in which prehospital tourniquets are used.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Emergency Medicine