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J Korean Med Assoc > Volume 61(12); 2018 > Article
Lim and Kang: Plan for plastic surgeons to participate in trauma teams at regional trauma and emergency centers

Abstract

A law revised in May 2012 provided support to regional and emergency centers for reducing the risk of preventable deaths. In particular, regional trauma centers have been established throughout the nation, with the goal of ensuring that any trauma patient can reach a trauma center within an hour. As a multidisciplinary approach is particularly important in treating severe trauma patients, activation teams are currently organized at each center to perform multiple simultaneous treatments. Under the present system, only 7 departments can participate in these trauma teams; emergency medicine, cardiothoracic surgery, general surgery, orthopedic surgery, neurosurgery, radiology, and anesthesiology. Plastic surgeons also play an essential role in treating trauma patients, and in fact currently treat many such cases. Especially in reconstruction procedures in patients with head and neck trauma and wide tissue defects, plastic surgeons possess unique expertise. However, since plastic surgeons are excluded from the trauma response teams due to institutional limitations, we describe the role and necessity of plastic surgery for trauma and emergency patients, and urge that the system be improved.

References

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Figure 1

The statistics of the emergency/trauma/severe trauma patients treated at Dankook University Hospital in 2017. a) Percentage of plastic surgery patients among trauma patients. b) Percentage of plastic surgery patients among severe trauma patients. c) Percentage of plastic surgery patients among all emergency patients.

jkma-61-710-g001-l.jpg
Table 1

Criteria of severe trauma patients[8].

jkma-61-710-i001-l.jpg

Criteria of severe trauma patients. Reproduced from Ministry of Health and Welfare. Guideline for operation of regional trauma center for 2016 [Internet]. Sejong: Ministry of Health and Welfare; 2016 [8].

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