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November 23, 1994

Complications of Trauma

JAMA. 1994;272(20):1626-1627. doi:10.1001/jama.1994.03520200084046

This article is only available in the PDF format. Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables.


This is indeed a very remarkable book—over 600 pages, packed with solid information for use in the prehospital, surgical, and postoperative phases of trauma care. It is written in an easy-to-read style but with careful attention to detail. It is authoritative, as Dr Mattox has assembled a faculty of nearly 80 contributing authors. Apparently nearly all are actively engaged in trauma care. The illustrations are plentiful and well chosen and add much clarity to the written page.

Leading off with "The Big Five Complications"—hemorrhage, respiratory failure, renal failure, sepsis, and multiorgan failure—the text then proceeds to more specific complications by anatomic region and organ system. Many points and procedures are amplified by comments on the basic science principles involved. Brief references to the recent historical aspects of trauma care enliven the discussions and remind us how far we have come in the last several decades.

The reader is cautioned against

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