Who Would Have Benefited from the Prehospital Use of Resuscitative Endovascular Balloon Occlusion of the Aorta (REBOA)? An Autopsy Study

Reynold Henry, Kazuhide Matsushima*, Rachel N. Henry, Victor Wong, Zachary Warriner, Aaron Strumwasser, Christopher P. Foran, Kenji Inaba, Todd E. Rasmussen, Demetrios Demetriades

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Background: Resuscitative endovascular balloon occlusion of the aorta (REBOA) has been increasingly used as part of damage control resuscitation for patients with non-compressible truncal hemorrhage. We hypothesized that there might be a select group of patients that could have benefited from prehospital placement of the REBOA. Study Design: This was a retrospective cohort study including patients who presented to a Level I trauma center with cardiac arrest between January 2014 and March 2018. The findings of a full autopsy were reviewed for the details of internal injuries. A patient was determined to be a REBOA candidate if the patient sustained abdominal organ injuries or pelvic fractures and no associated severe head injuries. The candidate group was compared with the non-candidate group based on prehospital vital signs and other patient characteristics. A multiple logistic regression analysis was performed to identify certain prehospital factors associated with candidacy for prehospital REBOA. Results: A total of 198 patients met our inclusion criteria. Of those, 27 (13.6%) patients were deemed REBOA candidates. Median Injury Severity Score was 22 (interquartile range 17 to 29). Patients in the candidate group were more likely to have a Glasgow Coma Scale score ≥9 (48% vs 15%; p = 0.012), oxygen saturation >90% (56% vs 35%; p = 0.03), and systolic blood pressure <90 mmHg (48% vs 26%; p = 0.04) in the field. Logistic regression showed that these 3 clinical parameters of prehospital vital signs were significantly associated with REBOA candidacy. Conclusions: Our data suggest that >10% of trauma patients who presented with cardiac arrest could have benefited from prehospital REBOA. Additional prospective studies are warranted to validate the use of field vital signs in selecting candidates.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)383-388.e1
JournalJournal of the American College of Surgeons
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2019
Externally publishedYes


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