Methodology Score: 3/5
Usefulness Score: 3/5

Cooper DJ, et al. JAMA. 2018;320(21):2211-2220. doi:10.1001/jama.2018.17075

Question/Methods: This study was done to determine the effectiveness of early prophylactic hypothermia compared with normothermic management of patients after severe traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Findings:  No statistically significant difference in favorable neurologic outcomes at 6 months was found between the hypothermic and normothermic groups (48.8% vs 49.1%, respectively; (p=0.94)).

Major Limitations: A significant number of patients in the hypothermia group never reached the target temperature

Interpretation: This paper does not support the use of prophylactic hypothermia over normothermia in patients with TBI, and therefore should not change our current practice.

By: Dr. Maeghan Fu

Hans Rosenberg
Dr. Rosenberg is an emergency physician at the Ottawa Hospital, assistant professor at the University of Ottawa, and Director of the Digital Scholarship and Knowledge Dissemination Program.