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Flow-cytometric analysis in traumatic brain injury to evaluate immunosuppression


Flow-cytometric analysis is still restricted to cancer and immunocompromised patients. There are no clinical studies that evaluate the immunological changes in traumatic brain injury (TBI) patients. The objective of this study is to determine whether patients with severe TBI (GCS <9) manifest early (<48 hours after injury) signs of immunosuppression and whether this condition increases the incidence of infection during the ICU stay.


We retrospectively analyzed data from 54 patients, including 10 patients with isolated brain injury and 44 patients with brain and extracranial injuries. The flow-cytometric analysis was performed within 48 hours of trauma. Collected data are shown in Table 1.

Table 1 Collected data


Preliminary analysis is limited to descriptive statistics that show an immediate immunosuppression condition after TBI, as established by reduction of CD4+ T lymphocytes and CD8+ T lymphocytes. Significant data are collected in Table 2.

Table 2 Flow-cytometric data


In severe TBI patients, an immunosuppression state is early developed. It is relevant to establish whether this condition could affect the course and prognosis of ICU patients.

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Di Valvasone, S., Perretta, L., Bonizzoli, M. et al. Flow-cytometric analysis in traumatic brain injury to evaluate immunosuppression. Crit Care 18 (Suppl 1), P227 (2014).

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