[Skip to Content]
[Skip to Content Landing]
December 4, 1967

Early Definitive Treatment of Vascular Injuries in the Vietnam Conflict

Author Affiliations

From the departments of surgery, Naval Hospital, Oakland, Calif (Dr. Chandler), and Naval Hospital, Jacksonville, Fla (Dr. Knapp).

JAMA. 1967;202(10):960-966. doi:10.1001/jama.1967.03130230086015

One hundred twenty-six vascular repairs in 118 Vietnam battle casualties resulted in a 5.1% mortality and a 19.8% amputation rate. These injuries differed from those seen in previous armed conflicts primarily because of the extremely short time between wounding and treatment typical of the medical evacuation system in South Vietnam. The overall severity of these cases is best attested by their average blood transfusion requirement of 5,800 ml. Particular consideration is directed to the specifics of perioperative care, the technical features of vessel reconstruction, and the value of certain ancillary measures. The amputated cases are reviewed for remedial errors and their potential for improved limb salvage.