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Hyperosmolar therapies for neurological deterioration in mild and moderate traumatic brain injury: A scoping review

posted on 2023-03-17, 13:20 authored by Nicolò Marchesini, Laura Lucía Fernández Londoño, Alessandro Boaro, Isla Kuhn, Dylan Griswold, Francesco Sala, Andrés M. Rubiano

To explore the available evidence on hyperosmolar therapies(HT) in mild and moderate traumatic brain injury(TBI) and to evaluate the effects on outcomes.

A scoping review was conducted according to the Joanna Briggs Institute methodology. Inclusion criteria: (a)randomized controlled trials(RCTs), prospective and retrospective cohort studies and case-control studies; (b)all-ages mild and moderate TBIs; (c)HT administration; (d)functional outcomes recorded; (e)comparator group.

From 4424 records, only 3 respected the inclusion criteria. In a retrospective cohort study of adult moderate TBIs, the Glasgow Coma Scale(GCS) remained the same at 48 hours in those treated with hypertonic saline(HTS) while it worsened in the non-treated. A trend toward increased pulmonary infections and length of stay was found. In an RCT of adult severe and moderate TBIs, moderate TBIs treated with HTS showed a trend toward better secondary outcomes than standard care alone, with similar odds of adverse effects. An RCT enrolling children with mild TBI found a significant improvement in concussive pain immediately after HTS administration and after 2–3 days. No adverse events occurred.

A gap in the literature about HTs’ role in mild and moderate TBI was found. Some benefits may exist with limited side effects and further studies are desirable.


The author(s) reported there is no funding associated with the work featured in this article.