Whole blood mitigates the acute coagulopathy of trauma and avoids the coagulopathy of crystalloid resuscitation

Forest R. Sheppard, Leasha J. Schaub, Col Andrew P. Cap, Antoni R. Macko, Hunter B. Moore, Ernest E. Moore, Cdr Jacob J. Glaser*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


INTRODUCTION The contributions of type and timing of fluid resuscitation to coagulopathy in trauma remain controversial. As part of a multifunctional resuscitation fluid research effort, we sought to further characterize the coagulation responses to resuscitation, specifically as compared to whole blood. We hypothesized that early whole blood administration mitigates the acute coagulopathy of trauma by avoiding the coagulopathy of CR resuscitation. METHODS Anesthetized rhesus macaques underwent polytraumatic, hemorrhagic shock, then a crossover study design resuscitation (n = 6 each) with either whole blood first (WB-1st) followed by crystalloid (CR); or CR-1st followed by WB. Resuscitation strategies were the following: WB-1st received 50% shed blood in 30minutes, followed by twice the shed blood volume (SBV) of CR over 30minutes and one times the SBV CR over 60minutes, where CR-1st received twice the SBV of CR over 30minutes, followed by 50% of shed blood in 30minutes, and one times the SBV CR over 60minutes. Blood samples were collected at baseline, end-of-shock, end-of-first and end-of-second resuscitation stages, and end-of-resuscitation for assessment (thromboelastometry, platelet aggregation, and plasmatic coagulation factors). Statistical analyses were conducted using two-way analysis of variance ANOVA with Bonferroni correction and t-tests; significance was at p < 0.05. RESULTS Survival, blood loss, hemodynamics, and shock duration were equivalent between the groups. Compared to baseline, parameters measured at first and second resuscitation stage time points directly following CR infusion revealed abnormalities in thromboelastometry (clot formation time, α angle, and maximum clot firmness), platelet aggregation response (to collagen, arachidonic acid, and adenosine diphosphate), and plasmatic coagulation (prothrombin time, anti-thrombin 3, and fibrinogen), while whole blood infusion resulted in stabilization or correction of these parameters following its administration. CONCLUSIONS These data suggest that in the setting of trauma and hemorrhagic shock, the coagulation alterations begin before intervention/resuscitation; however, these are significantly aggravated by CR resuscitation and could perhaps be best termed acute coagulopathy of resuscitation. Study type: Translational animal model.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1055-1062
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Coagulation
  • clot
  • coagulopathy
  • crystalloid
  • hypocoagulable
  • resuscitation
  • shock
  • trauma
  • whole blood


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