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Military Health System Studies Inventory Tool

Welcome to the Military Health System Studies Inventory Tool (MSIT). Military Health System (MHS) data are used by Department of Defense, Veterans Administration, and academic health professionals and scientists to implement health care studies. These studies reflect the MHS interest to rigorously assess and improve our beneficiaries’ access to the high quality health care services they need. Additionally, these studies are frequently used to develop or improve MHS policy and often adopt useful, relevant comparisons to the national health care experience.

The MSIT allows easy review of recent studies that are either conducted or sponsored by the MHS, or accomplished using datasets developed or maintained by the Defense Health Agency for administrative, operational, or research purposes. The studies within this website represent important contributions of the MHS to the national health care dialogue and reflect our capacity to tackle the challenging issues needed to support evidence-informed health policy. Thank you for your interest in them.

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Durations of service until first and recurrent episodes of clinically significant back pain, active component military members: changes among new accessions to service since calendar year 2000.

Study

Abstract

This report summarizes frequencies and timing of first and recurrent episodes of back pain treated in the U.S. Military Health System among more than 2 million military members who began active service between July 2000 and June 2012. In the population overall, at least 5% were affected by clinically significant back pain within 6 months and 10% within 13 months of beginning active service; and 34% had at least one episode of back pain while in active service during the surveillance period. After initial episodes of back pain, more than half (54%) of those affected had at least one recurrent episode; and after first recurrences, 65% had second recurrences while still in active service. In general, back pain episode-free periods preceding initial and between successive episodes markedly decreased during the period. Frequencies and timing of back pain episodes varied in relation to service branch, gender, and occupation. Acute back pain is a common disorder that is unpredictable in onset and often debilitating. Its prevention should be a military medical research objective of high priority.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Armed Forces Health Surveillance Center
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Release Date/Publication: January 01, 2016
  • Citation: Brundage JF, Hu Z, Clark LL. Durations of service until first and recurrent episodes of clinically significant back pain, active component military members: changes among new accessions to service since calendar year 2000. MSMR. 2016 Jan;23(1):7-15.

The Importance of Military Cultural Competence.

Study

Abstract

Military cultural competence has recently gained national attention. Experts have posited that limited outcomes in the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder and depression in the military may be related to limited familiarity with the military. National surveys have indicated low military cultural competence among providers and limited educational efforts on military culture or pertinent military pathology in medical schools and residency training programs. Military families, with their own unique military cultural identity, have been identified as a population with increased risks associated with deployment. In response to these findings, several curricula regarding military culture have been established and widely distributed. Assessments of military cultural competence have also been developed. The clinical impact of enhanced cultural competence in general has thus far been limited. The military, however, with its highly prescribed cultural identity, may be a model culture for further study.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Undetermined
  • Release Date/Publication: February 01, 2016
  • Citation: Meyer EG, Writer BW, Brim W. The Importance of Military Cultural Competence. Curr Psychiatry Rep. 2016 Mar;18(3):26.

Assessment of Deployment-Related Exposures on Risk of Incident Mental Health Diagnoses Among Air Force Critical Care Providers: Nested Case-Control Study.

Study

Abstract

OBJECTIVES: The purpose of this study was to determine the association between deployment-related occupational/environmental exposures and incident postdeployment mental health (PDMH) conditions in a defined population of military health care professionals working in the deployed critical care environment. METHODS: A nested case-control study compared cohort members with a PDMH condition (cases, N = 146) with those without a PDMH condition (controls, N = 800) in terms of deployment-related exposures as ascertained using Postdeployment Health Assessment DD 2796 questionnaire data. Multivariable logistic regression models were used to compute odds ratios. RESULTS: Nonphysician career fields (i.e., nurses and medical technicians), exposure to dead bodies or people killed/wounded, history of a vehicular accident/crash, exposure to sand/dust, exposure to lasers, and use of mission-oriented protective posture (MOPP) overgarments were associated with increased likelihood for a PDMH condition. The infrequent exposures (i.e., vehicular accident/crash, lasers, and MOPP overgarments) were the exposures most strongly associated with subsequent PDHM conditions. CONCLUSIONS: For military health care providers returning from the deployed environment, several exposures are useful for predicting those at increased risk for a PDMH condition. However, there are likely many other important risk factors beyond those captured on the DD 2796 questionnaire.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Air Force
  • Sponsoring Office:
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Air Force
  • Release Date/Publication: February 01, 2016
  • Citation: Tvaryanas AP, Maupin GM, Fouts BL. Assessment of Deployment-Related Exposures on Risk of Incident Mental Health Diagnoses Among Air Force Critical Care Providers: Nested Case-Control Study. Mil Med. 2016 Feb;181(2):143-51.

U.S. Military Surveillance of Mental Disorders, 1998-2013.

Study

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: Feature articles in the Medical Surveillance Monthly Report (MSMR) reflect the U.S. military's health surveillance priorities. This study examined whether the recent rise in the number of ambulatory encounters for mental disorders in the U.S. military associated with the Iraq and Afghanistan wars was reflected in a proportional increase in MSMR feature articles on this topic. METHODS: Articles published in the MSMR from January 1998 to December 2013 were examined to categorize feature articles according to health outcome. The proportion of articles by topic of outcome was compared with the proportion of all ambulatory encounters by category of disorder. RESULTS: Mental disorders constituted 13% of ambulatory encounters and were the topic of 11% of 329 feature articles during the period, a statistically nonsignificant difference. CONCLUSIONS: The increased number of encounters for mental disorders has been met with a proportional but delayed increase in the number of MSMR feature articles focusing on these disorders.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Undetermined
  • Release Date/Publication: February 01, 2016
  • Citation: Wicken C, Nevin R, Ritchie EC. U.S. Military Surveillance of Mental Disorders, 1998-2013. Psychiatr Serv. 2016 Feb 1;67(2):248-51.

Long-term outcomes after moderate-to-severe traumatic brain injury among military veterans: Successes and challenges.

Study

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: To assess long-term outcomes after traumatic brain injury (TBI) among veterans and service members. SETTING: Regional Veterans Affairs medical centre. PARTICIPANTS: One hundred and eighteen veterans and military personnel, aged 23-70 years (median = 35 years), 90% male, had moderate-to-severe TBI (82% in coma > 1 day, 85% amnesic > 7 days), followed by acute interdisciplinary rehabilitation 5-16 years ago (median = 8 years). DESIGN: Cross-sectional analysis of live interviews conducted via telephone. MAIN MEASURES: TBI follow-up interview (occupational, social, cognitive, neurologic and psychiatric ratings), Community Integration Questionnaire, Disability Rating Scale (four indices of independent function) and Satisfaction with Life Scale. RESULTS: At follow-up, 52% of participants were working or attending school; 34% ended or began marriages after TBI, but the overall proportion married changed little. Finally, 22% were still moderately-to-severely disabled. However, 62% of participants judged themselves to be as satisfied or more satisfied with life than before injury. Injury severity, especially post-traumatic amnesia, was correlated with poorer outcomes in all functional domains. CONCLUSIONS: After moderate-severe TBI, most veterans assume productive roles and are satisfied with life. However, widespread difficulties and functional limitations persist. These findings suggest that veteran and military healthcare systems should continue periodic, comprehensive follow-up evaluations long after moderate-to-severe TBI.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Undetermined
  • Release Date/Publication: February 01, 2016
  • Citation: Schulz-Heik RJ, Poole JH, Dahdah MN, Sullivan C, Date ES, Salerno RM, Schwab K, Harris O. Long-term outcomes after moderate-to-severe traumatic brain injury among military veterans: Successes and challenges. Brain Inj. 2016 Feb 6:1-9

The Interactive Effects of the Capability for Suicide and Major Depressive Episodes on Suicidal Behavior in a Military Sample.

Study

Abstract

Major depressive symptoms represent a significant risk for suicidal ideation and behavior. Given that suicide is fearsome, the interpersonal theory of suicide proposes that individuals who engage in suicidal behavior possess not only the desire to die, but also the acquired capability (AC) for suicide. This study examined whether major depressive episodes (MDEs) may be particularly relevant to suicidal behavior when considered in the context of AC. History of MDEs, AC, and suicide attempt history were examined in a large (n=3,377) sample of military members. Data were analyzed using hierarchical multiple regression. Results indicated that among individuals with high AC, the number of MDEs was significantly, positively associated with number of previous suicide attempts; MDEs were not significantly related to suicide attempt history among individuals with low AC. Findings held in the presence of robust covariates associated with suicidal behavior. Findings suggest that a history of MDEs alone may not indicate severe suicide risk - increased AC for suicide appears necessary for increased suicide risk. Implications for suicide treatment and prevention in military personnel are discussed.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office:
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Undetermined
  • Release Date/Publication: February 01, 2016
  • Citation: Chu C, Podlogar M, Hagan CR, Buchman-Schmitt JM, Silva C, Chiurliza B, et.al., The Interactive Effects of the Capability for Suicide and Major Depressive Episodes on Suicidal Behavior in a Military Sample. Cognit Ther Res. 2016 Feb;40(1):22-30.

Costs and consequences: Hepatitis C seroprevalence in the military and its impact on potential screening strategies.

Study

Abstract

Knowledge of the contemporary epidemiology of hepatitis C viral (HCV) infection among military personnel can inform potential Department of Defense screening policy. HCV infection status at the time of accession and following deployment was determined by evaluating reposed serum from 10,000 service members recently deployed to combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan in the period 2007-2010. A cost model was developed from the perspective of the Department of Defense for a military applicant screening program. Return on investment was based on comparison between screening program costs and potential treatment costs avoided. The prevalence of HCV antibody-positive and chronic HCV infection at accession among younger recently deployed military personnel born after 1965 was 0.98/1000 (95% confidence interval 0.45-1.85) and 0.43/1000 (95% confidence interval 0.12-1.11), respectively. Among these, service-related incidence was low; 64% of infections were present at the time of accession. With no screening, the cost to the Department of Defense of treating the estimated 93 cases of chronic HCV cases from a single year's accession cohort was $9.3 million. Screening with the HCV antibody test followed by the nucleic acid test for confirmation yielded a net annual savings and a $3.1 million dollar advantage over not screening. CONCLUSIONS: Applicant screening will reduce chronic HCV infection in the force, result in a small system costs savings, and decrease the threat of transfusion-transmitted HCV infection in the battlefield blood supply and may lead to earlier diagnosis and linkage to care; initiation of an applicant screening program will require ongoing evaluation that considers changes in the treatment cost and practice landscape, screening options, and the epidemiology of HCV in the applicant/accession and overall force populations. (Hepatology 2016;63:398-407).

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Undetermined
  • Release Date/Publication: February 01, 2016
  • Citation: Brett-Major DM, Frick KD, Malia JA, Hakre S, Okulicz JF, Beckett CG, et.al., . Costs and consequences: Hepatitis C seroprevalence in the military and its impact on potential screening strategies. Hepatology. 2016 Feb;63(2):398-407.

Trends in B-Vitamin Prescriptions From Military Treatment Facilities: 2007 to 2011.

Study

Abstract

INTRODUCTION:

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Release Date/Publication: July 01, 2015
  • Citation: Krieger JA, Arnold RM, Attipoe S, Jones DR, Stephens MB, Deuster PA. Trends in B-Vitamin Prescriptions From Military Treatment Facilities: 2007 to 2011. Mil Med. 2015 Jul;180(7):732-6.

Trends in Androgen Prescriptions From Military Treatment Facilities: 2007 to 2011.

Study

Abstract

INTRODUCTION: The role of testosterone in health and quality of life has become increasingly visible and overtly marketed to the public. Some evidence suggests that testosterone levels in men may be low because of a variety of reasons, including stress and environmental exposures. OBJECTIVE: This study examines trends in testosterone prescriptions dispensed by military treatment facilities (MTFs). METHODS: We examined data from the Department of Defense Pharmacy Data Transaction Service to determine the nature of androgen prescriptions dispensed through MTFs from 2007 through 2011. RESULTS: The number of androgen prescriptions increased more than two-fold across the military from 19,494 in 2007 to 45,270 in 2011. Most prescriptions (99%) were for men. Androgen prescription rates rose 23% per year from 2007 through 2011 (p < 0.001, CI 23-24%). The prescription rate for 35- to 44-year-olds increased more than any other age group, with annual increases averaging 33% (p < 0.001, CI 32-34%). CONCLUSION: The number of androgen prescriptions within MTFs rose significantly from 2007 through 2011. This is similar to rises in androgen prescriptions seen in civilian medical systems. Clinical indications for the sharp increase in testosterone prescriptions are unknown, and the indications for clinically appropriate testosterone replacement need further clarification.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Release Date/Publication: July 01, 2015
  • Citation: Canup R, Bogenberger K, Attipoe S, Jones DR, Olsen CH, Stephens MB, Deuster PA. Trends in Androgen Prescriptions From Military Treatment Facilities: 2007 to 2011. Mil Med. 2015 Jul;180(7):728-31.

Development and validation of trauma surgical skills metrics: Preliminary assessment of performance after training.

Study

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Maintaining trauma-specific surgical skills is an ongoing challenge for surgical training programs. An objective assessment of surgical skills is needed. We hypothesized that a validated surgical performance assessment tool could detect differences following a training intervention. METHODS: We developed surgical performance assessment metrics based on discussion with expert trauma surgeons, video review of 10 experts and 10 novice surgeons performing three vascular exposure procedures and lower extremity fasciotomy on cadavers, and validated the metrics with interrater reliability testing by five reviewers blinded to level of expertise and a consensus conference. We tested these performance metrics in 12 surgical residents (Year 3-7) before and 2 weeks after vascular exposure skills training in the Advanced Surgical Skills for Exposure in Trauma (ASSET) course. Performance was assessed in three areas as follows: knowledge (anatomic, management), procedure steps, and technical skills. Time to completion of procedures was recorded, and these metrics were combined into a single performance score, the Trauma Readiness Index (TRI). Wilcoxon matched-pairs signed-ranks test compared pretraining/posttraining effects. RESULTS: Mean time to complete procedures decreased by 4.3 minutes (from 13.4 minutes to 9.1 minutes). The performance component most improved by the 1-day skills training was procedure steps, completion of which increased by 21%. Technical skill scores improved by 12%. Overall knowledge improved by 3%, with 18% improvement in anatomic knowledge. TRI increased significantly from 50% to 64% with ASSET training. Interrater reliability of the surgical performance assessment metrics was validated with single intraclass correlation coefficient of 0.7 to 0.98. CONCLUSION: A trauma-relevant surgical performance assessment detected improvements in specific procedure steps and anatomic knowledge taught during a 1-day course, quantified by the TRI. ASSET training reduced time to complete vascular control by one third. Future applications include assessing specific skills in a larger surgeon cohort, assessing military surgical readiness, and quantifying skill degradation with time since training.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Undetermined
  • Release Date/Publication: July 01, 2015
  • Citation: Shackelford S, et. al., . Development and validation of trauma surgical skills metrics: Preliminary assessment of performance after training. J Trauma Acute Care Surg. 2015 Jul;79(1):105-10.

Trends in Mineral Supplement Prescriptions From Military Treatment Facilities: 2007 to 2011.

Study

Abstract

INTRODUCTION: Mineral supplements such as calcium and iron are readily available over the counter and are some of the most frequently consumed dietary supplements. Health care providers also prescribe mineral supplements for treatment of certain conditions and to maintain health. OBJECTIVE: This study examines trends in mineral-supplement prescriptions dispensed by military treatment facilities. METHODS: We examined data from the DoD Pharmacy Data Transaction Service to determine the nature of mineral-supplement prescriptions dispensed by MTFs from 2007 through 2011. RESULTS: Overall, 1,785,158 calcium, 844,655 iron, 166,207 magnesium, and 23,297 zinc prescriptions were dispensed over this 5-year period. Although the number of zinc prescriptions decreased considerably by an average of 30% across the 5-year period, calcium and magnesium prescriptions increased by 3% and 8%, respectively. The number of iron prescriptions dispensed was relatively stable across the 5 years. CONCLUSIONS: Patterns of mineral-supplement prescriptions in the military changed over the 5-year period examined. However, the patterns within the DoD medical system may or may not represent those of the civilian medical system. Because we could not determine the reasons why the mineral supplements were prescribed, we cannot report whether the supplements were effective for the intended uses.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Release Date/Publication: July 01, 2015
  • Citation: Attipoe S, Jones DR, Olsen CH, Stephens MB, Deuster PA. Trends in Mineral Supplement Prescriptions From Military Treatment Facilities: 2007 to 2011. Mil Med. 2015 Jul;180(7):742-7.

Building social resilience in soldiers: A double dissociative randomized controlled study.

Study

Abstract

Can social resilience be trained? We report results of a double-dissociative randomized controlled study in which 48 Army platoons were randomly assigned to social resilience training (intervention condition) or cultural awareness training (active control group). The same surveys were administered to all platoons at baseline and after the completion of training to determine the short-term training effects, generalization effects beyond training, and possible adverse effects. Multilevel modeling analyses indicated that social resilience, compared with cultural awareness, training produced small but significant improvements in social cognition (e.g., increased empathy, perspective taking, & military hardiness) and decreased loneliness, but no evidence was found for social resilience training to generalize beyond these training foci nor to have adverse effects. Moreover, as predicted, cultural awareness, compared with social resilience, training produced increases in knowledge about and decreases in prejudice toward Afghans. Additional research is warranted to determine the long-term durability, safety, and generalizability of social resilience training.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Walter Reed National Military Medical Center
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Undetermined
  • Release Date/Publication: July 01, 2015
  • Citation: Cacioppo JT, Adler AB, Lester PB, McGurk D, Thomas JL, Chen HY, Cacioppo S. Building social resilience in soldiers: A double dissociative randomized controlled study. J Pers Soc Psychol. 2015 Jul;109(1):90-105.

Monitoring Exposure to Ebola and Health of U.S. Military Personnel Deployed in Support of Ebola Control Efforts - Liberia, October 25, 2014-February 27, 2015.

Study

Abstract

In response to the unprecedented Ebola virus disease (Ebola) outbreak in West Africa, the U.S. government deployed approximately 2,500 military personnel to support the government of Liberia. Their primary missions were to construct Ebola treatment units (ETUs), train health care workers to staff ETUs, and provide laboratory testing capacity for Ebola. Service members were explicitly prohibited from engaging in activities that could result in close contact with an Ebola-infected patient or coming in contact with the remains of persons who had died from unknown causes. Military units performed twice-daily monitoring of temperature and review of exposures and symptoms ("unit monitoring") on all persons throughout deployment, exit screening at the time of departure from Liberia, and post-deployment monitoring for 21 days at segregated, controlled monitoring areas on U.S. military installations. A total of 32 persons developed a fever during deployment from October 25, 2014, through February 27, 2015; none had a known Ebola exposure or developed Ebola infection. Monitoring of all deployed service members revealed no Ebola exposures or infections. Given their activity restrictions and comprehensive monitoring while deployed to Liberia, U.S. military personnel constitute a unique population with a lower risk for Ebola exposure compared with those working in the country without such measures.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: DoD agency, office, or organization other than the Army, Navy, Air Force, or Defense Health Agency
  • Sponsoring Office:
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Agency, office or organization under authority of the Sec Def (not affiliated to Army, Navy, or Air Force)
  • Release Date/Publication: July 01, 2015
  • Citation: Cardile AP, et. al., Monitoring Exposure to Ebola and Health of U.S. Military Personnel Deployed in Support of Ebola Control Efforts - Liberia, October 25, 2014-February 27, 2015. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2015 Jul 3;64(25):690-4.

Trends in Vitamin A, C, D, E, K Supplement Prescriptions From Military Treatment Facilities: 2007 to 2011.

Study

Abstract

INTRODUCTION: Although prior studies have examined the prevalence of dietary supplement use among various populations, data on single vitamins prescribed by health care providers are limited. OBJECTIVE: This study examined trends in single-vitamin supplement (A, C, D, E, K) prescriptions by providers from military treatment facilities from 2007 to 2011. METHODS: We examined prescription data from the Department of Defense Pharmacy Data Transaction Service to determine trends in the aforementioned single-vitamin supplement prescriptions. Prescription rates per 1,000 active duty personnel were estimated using population data retrieved from the Defense Medical Epidemiology Database (i.e., [number of prescriptions/population size] × 1,000). RESULTS: Across the 5-year period, the number of vitamin D prescriptions per 1,000 active duty personnel increased 454%. In contrast, the number of vitamin A, vitamin E, and vitamin K prescriptions per 1,000 active duty personnel decreased by 32%, 53%, and 29% respectively. Vitamin C prescriptions remained relatively constant. Across all age groups, total single-vitamin supplement prescriptions increased by 180%. CONCLUSION: Together, prescriptions examined in this study increased steadily from 2007 to 2011, primarily because of the increase in vitamin D prescriptions. The exhibited trend reflects the current general-population pattern of dietary supplement use, with large increases in vitamin D and declines in vitamin E.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Release Date/Publication: July 01, 2015
  • Citation: Morioka TY, Bolin JT, Attipoe S, Jones DR, Stephens MB, Deuster PA. Trends in Vitamin A, C, D, E, K Supplement Prescriptions From Military Treatment Facilities: 2007 to 2011. Mil Med. 2015 Jul;180(7):748-53.

Impact of Mucorales and Other Invasive Molds on Clinical Outcomes of Polymicrobial Traumatic Wound Infections.

Study

Abstract

Combat trauma wounds with invasive fungal infections (IFIs) are often polymicrobial with fungal and bacterial growth, but the impact of the wound microbiology on clinical outcomes is uncertain. Our objectives were to compare the microbiological features between IFI and non-IFI wounds and evaluate whether clinical outcomes differed among IFI wounds based upon mold type. Data from U.S. military personnel injured in Afghanistan with IFI wounds were examined. Controls were matched by the pattern/severity of injury, including blood transfusion requirements. Wound closure timing was compared between IFI and non-IFI control wounds (with/without bacterial infections). IFI wound closure was also assessed according to mold species isolation. Eighty-two IFI wounds and 136 non-IFI wounds (63 with skin and soft tissue infections [SSTIs] and 73 without) were examined. The time to wound closure was longer for the IFI wounds (median, 16 days) than for the non-IFI controls with/without SSTIs (medians, 12 and 9 days, respectively; P < 0.001). The growth of multidrug-resistant Gram-negative rods was reported among 35% and 41% of the IFI and non-IFI wounds with SSTIs, respectively. Among the IFI wounds, times to wound closure were significantly longer for wounds with Mucorales growth than for wounds with non-Mucorales growth (median, 17 days versus 13 days; P < 0.01). When wounds with Mucorales and Aspergillus spp. growth were compared, there was no significant difference in wound closure timing. Trauma wounds with SSTIs were often polymicrobial, yet the presence of invasive molds (predominant types: order Mucorales, Aspergillus spp., and Fusarium spp.) significantly prolonged the time to wound closure. Overall, the times to wound closure were longest for the IFI wounds with Mucorales growth.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Walter Reed National Military Medical Center
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Release Date/Publication: July 01, 2015
  • Citation: Warkentien TE, et.al., Impact of Mucorales and Other Invasive Molds on Clinical Outcomes of Polymicrobial Traumatic Wound Infections. J Clin Microbiol. 2015 Jul;53(7):2262-70.
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