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  • Author or Editor: Ayaz M. Khawaja x
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Saksham Gupta, Blake M. Hauser, Mark M. Zaki, Edward Xu, David J. Cote, Yi Lu, John H. Chi, Michael Groff, Ayaz M. Khawaja, Mitchel B. Harris, Timothy R. Smith and Hasan A. Zaidi

OBJECTIVE

Sports injuries present a considerable risk of debilitating spinal injury. Here, the authors sought to profile the epidemiology and clinical risk of traumatic spinal injuries (TSIs) in pediatric sports injuries.

METHODS

The authors conducted a retrospective cohort analysis of pediatric patients who had experienced a sports-related TSI, including spinal fractures and spinal cord injuries, encoded in the National Trauma Data Bank in the period from 2011 to 2014.

RESULTS

Included in the analysis were 1723 cases of pediatric sports-related TSI, which represented 3.7% of all pediatric sports-related trauma. The majority of patients with TSI were male (81%), and the median age was 15 years (IQR 13–16 years). TSIs arose most often from cycling accidents (47%) and contact sports (28%). The most frequently fractured regions were the thoracic (30%) and cervical (27%) spine. Among patients with spinal cord involvement (SCI), the cervical spine was involved in 60% of cases.

The average length of stay for TSIs was 2 days (IQR 1–5 days), and 32% of the patients required ICU-level care. Relative to other sports-related trauma, TSIs without SCI were associated with an increased adjusted mean length of stay by 1.8 days (95% CI 1.6–2.0 days), as well as the need for ICU-level care (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] 1.6, 95% CI 1.3–1.9). Also relative to other sports-related trauma, TSIs with SCI had an increased length of stay by 2.1 days (95% CI 1.8–2.6 days) and the need for ICU-level care (aOR 3.6, 95% CI 2.6–4.8).

TSIs without SCI were associated with discharge to or with rehabilitative services (aOR 1.7, 95% CI 1.5–2.0), as were TSIs with SCI (aOR 4.0, 95% CI 3.2–4.9), both relative to other sports-related trauma. Among the patients with TSIs, predictors of the need for rehabilitation at discharge were having a laminectomy or fusion, concomitant lower-extremity injury, head injury, and thoracic injury. Although TSIs affected 4% of the study cohort, these injuries were present in 8% of patients discharged to or with rehabilitation services and in 17% of those who died in the hospital.

CONCLUSIONS

Traumatic sports-related spinal injuries cause significant morbidity in the pediatric population, especially if the spinal cord is involved. The majority of TSI cases arose from cycling and contact sports accidents, underscoring the need for improving education and safety in these activities.

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Shyam S. Rao, David Y. Chung, Zoe Wolcott, Faheem Sheriff, Ayaz M. Khawaja, Hang Lee, Mary M. Guanci, Thabele M. Leslie-Mazwi, W. Taylor Kimberly, Aman B. Patel and Guy A. Rordorf

OBJECTIVE

There is variability and uncertainty about the optimal approach to the management and discontinuation of an external ventricular drain (EVD) after subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH). Evidence from single-center randomized trials suggests that intermittent CSF drainage and rapid EVD weans are safe and associated with shorter ICU length of stay (LOS) and fewer EVD complications. However, a recent survey revealed that most neurocritical care units across the United States employ continuous CSF drainage with a gradual wean strategy. Therefore, the authors sought to determine the optimal EVD management approach at their institution.

METHODS

The authors reviewed records of 200 patients admitted to their institution from 2010 to 2016 with aneurysmal SAH requiring an EVD. In 2014, the neurocritical care unit of the authors’ institution revised the internal EVD management guidelines from a continuous CSF drainage with gradual wean approach (continuous/gradual) to an intermittent CSF drainage with rapid EVD wean approach (intermittent/rapid). The authors performed a retrospective multivariable analysis to compare outcomes before and after the guideline change.

RESULTS

The authors observed a significant reduction in ventriculoperitoneal (VP) shunt rates after changing to an intermittent CSF drainage with rapid EVD wean approach (13% intermittent/rapid vs 35% continuous/gradual, OR 0.21, p = 0.001). There was no increase in delayed VP shunt placement at 3 months (9.3% vs 8.6%, univariate p = 0.41). The intermittent/rapid EVD approach was also associated with a shorter mean EVD duration (10.2 vs 15.6 days, p < 0.001), shorter ICU LOS (14.2 vs 16.9 days, p = 0.001), shorter hospital LOS (18.2 vs 23.7 days, p < 0.0001), and lower incidence of a nonfunctioning EVD (15% vs 30%, OR 0.29, p = 0.006). The authors found no significant differences in the rates of symptomatic vasospasm (24.6% vs 20.2%, p = 0.52) or ventriculostomy-associated infections (1.3% vs 8.8%, OR 0.30, p = 0.315) between the 2 groups.

CONCLUSIONS

An intermittent CSF drainage with rapid EVD wean approach is associated with fewer VP shunt placements, fewer complications, and shorter LOS compared to a continuous CSF drainage with gradual EVD wean approach. There is a critical need for prospective multicenter studies to determine if the authors’ experience is generalizable to other centers.