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Retrospective observation of 6-month survival following decompressive craniectomy in a London major trauma and stroke centre


This study describes 5.5 years of retrospective data examining hospital and 6-month outcome of patients following decompressive craniectomy (DC). The effectiveness of DC remains uncertain with conflicting results in patients with TBI and stroke [1, 2].


Data were drawn (1 January 2006 to 30 June 2011) from three hospital databases following approval by the institutional board.


There were 2,148 neurosurgical admissions with 71 undergoing DC. Forty-eight of 71 (67.6%) survived to hospital discharge and 21/33 in both TBI and stroke groups survived to 6 months. See Table 1.

Table 1


Survival following DC in this institution compares favourably with published data. Reduced survival in 2011 may be a case-mix effect related to increased tertiary referrals. We will now prospectively collect these data including quality-of-life measures.


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    Cooper DJ, et al: N Engl J Med. 2011, 364: 1493-1502. 10.1056/NEJMoa1102077.

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    Hofmeijer J, et al: Lancet Neurol. 2009, 8: 326-333. 10.1016/S1474-4422(09)70047-X.

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Correspondence to J Dawson.

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Dawson, J., Hopkins, P., Ling, J. et al. Retrospective observation of 6-month survival following decompressive craniectomy in a London major trauma and stroke centre. Crit Care 16, P309 (2012).

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  • Public Health
  • Emergency Medicine
  • Hospital Discharge
  • Tertiary Referral
  • Retrospective Data