The objective of this application is to establish a network of Centers of Excellence within the Latin American Brain Injury Consortium (LABIC) that will, in collaboration with U.S. partners, conduct research and training programs about traumatic brain injury (TBI).
Our specific aims are: #1: In a randomized controlled trial in 3 trauma centers in Bolivia, test the effect on outcomes of management of severe TBI guided by information from ICP monitors vs. a standard empiric protocol. #2: In a prospective, observational study in 7 trauma centers in Latin America, test the association between resource availability/medical management and outcomes for patients with severe TBI. #3: Establish a network of research centers with investigators trained and skilled in the design, conduct, and funding of research programs to address TBI and other brain disorders in Latin America. We hypothesize that: #1. Patients with severe TBI whose acute care treatment is managed using ICP monitors will have significantly lower mortality and better neuropsychological and functional recovery at 6 months post-trauma than those whose treatment is managed with the standard protocol. #2. The incorporation of ICP monitoring into the care of patients with severe TBI will minimize secondary complications and decrease length of stay in ICU. #3. The association between treatment and outcomes for patients with severe TBI identified in the randomized trial of ICP monitoring will generalize to the population in the prospective, observational, study. #4. Variations in resource availability and medical management will be significantly associated with mortality and functional recovery for patients with severe TBI, after controlling for patient and injury characteristics. In fulfilling the aims of this project, important research questions will be answered about TBI in an environment of limited resources, aspects of which will generalize to other developing countries as well as to the developed world. Sustainable capacity to conduct research about TBI in Latin America will be established. Within the structure of LABIC, a cadre of professionals will be trained in clinical research who will be equipped to carry out studies that answer questions which are relevant and important to Latin America. These studies will establish a literature base from which Latin American investigators can generate their own guidelines for the treatment of TBI.
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