A method for comparing death rates of groups of injured persons was developed, using hospital and medical examiner data for more than 2,000 persons. The first step was determination of the extent to which injury severity as rated by the Abbreviated Injury Scale correlates with patient survival. Substantial correlation was demonstrated. Controlling for severity of the primary injury made it possible to measure the effect on mortality of additional injuries. Injuries that in themselves would not normally be life threatening were shown to have a marked effect on mortality when they occurred in combination with other injuries. An Injury Severity Score was developed that correlates well with survival and provides a numerical description of the overall severity of injury for patients with multiple trauma. Results of this investigation indicate that the Injury Severity Score represents an important step in solving the problem of summarizing injury severity, especially in patients with multiple trauma. The score is easily derived, and is based on a widely used injury classification system, the Abbreviated Injury Scale. Use of the Injury Severity Score facilitates comparison of the mortality experience of varied groups of trauma patients, thereby improving ability to evaluate care of the injured.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine