Effect of training in advanced trauma life support on the kinematics of the spine: A simulation study

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Abstract

More than 7.5 million people in the world are affected by spinal cord injury (SCI). In this study, we aimed to analyze the effect of training in advanced trauma life support (ATLS) on the kinematics of the spine when performing different mobilization and immobilization techniques on patients with suspected SCI. A quasi-experimental study, clinical simulation, was carried out to determine the effect of training in ATLS on 32 students enrolled in the Master's program of Emergency and Special Care Nursing. The evaluation was performed through 2 maneuvers: placing of the scoop stretcher (SS) and spinal board (SB), with an actor who simulated a clinical situation of suspected spinal injury. The misalignment of the spine was measured with the use of a Vicon 3D motion capture system, before (pre-test) and after (post-test) the training. In the overall misalignment of both maneuvers, statistically significant differences were found between the pre-test misalignment of 62.1° ± 25.9°, and the post-test misalignment of 32.3° ± 10.0°, with a difference between means of 29.7° [(95% confidence interval, 95% CI 22.8–36.6°), (P = .001)]. The results obtained for the placing of the SS showed that there was a pre-test misalignment of 65.1° ± 28.7°, and a post-test misalignment of 33.2° ± 10.1°, with a difference of means of 33.9° [(95% CI, 23.1–44.6°), (P = .001)]. During the placing of the SB, a pre-test misalignment of 59.0° ± 28.7° and a post-test misalignment of 33.4° ± 10.0° were obtained, as well as a difference of means of 25.6° [(95% CI 16.6–34.6°), (P = .001)]. The main conclusion of this study is that training in ATLS decreases the misalignment provoked during the utilization of the SS and SB, regardless of the device used.

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