Background: The effect of β-blockade in trauma patients without significant head injuries is unknown. The purpose of this investigation was to determine the impact of β-blocker exposure on mortality in critically injured trauma patients who did not sustain significant head injuries.
Methods: Critically ill trauma patients (Injury Severity Score ≥ 25) admitted to the surgical intensive care unit from January 2000 to December 2008 without severe traumatic brain injuries (head Abbreviated Injury Score ≥ 3) were included in this retrospective review. Patients who received β-blockers within 30 days of intensive care unit admission were compared with those who did not. The primary outcome measure evaluated was in-hospital mortality.
Results: During the 9-year study period, 663 critically injured patients (Injury Severity Score ≥ 25) were admitted to the intensive care unit. Of these, 98 patients (14.8%) received β-blockers. Patients exposed to β-blockers had significantly lower in-hospital mortality (11.2% vs 19.3%, P = .006). Stepwise logistic regression identified β-blocker use as an independent protective factor for mortality (adjusted odds ratio, .37; P = .007) in critically injured patients.
Conclusions: Beta-blocker exposure was associated with reduced mortality in critically injured patients without head injuries. Prospective validation of this finding is warranted.
Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.