Fibrinogen early in severe trauma study (Feisty): Results from an Australian multicentre randomised controlled pilot trial

James Winearls*, Martin Wullschleger, Elizabeth Wake, Zoe McQuilten, Michael Reade, Catherine Hurn, Glenn Ryan, Melita Trout, James Walsham, Anthony Holley, Shane George, Wayne Dyer, James McCullough, Gerben Keijzers, John Fraser, Jeffrey Presneill, Don Campbell

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Haemorrhage is a major cause of death in severe trauma. Fibrinogen plays a critical role in maintaining haemostasis in traumatic haemorrhage, and early replacement using fibrinogen concentrate (FC) or cryoprecipitate (Cryo) is recommended by several international trauma guidelines. Limited evidence supports one product over the other, with widespread geographic and institutional variation in practice. Two previous trials have investigated the feasibility of rapid FC administration in severely injured trauma patients, with conflicting results. Objective: To compare the time to fibrinogen replacement using FC or Cryo in severely injured trauma patients with major haemorrhage and hypofibrinogenaemia. Design, setting, patients and interventions: A multicentre controlled pilot trial in which adult trauma patients with haemorrhage were randomly assigned (1:1) to receive FC or Cryo for fibrinogen replacement, guided by FIBTEM A5 (functional fibrinogen assessment at 5 minutes after clot formation, using rotational thromboelastometry). Main outcome measures: The primary outcome was time to commencement of fibrinogen replacement. Secondary outcomes included effects of the intervention on plasma fibrinogen levels and clinical outcomes including transfusion requirements and mortality. Results: Of the 100 randomly assigned patients, 62 were hypofibrinogenaemic and received the intervention (n = 37) or Cryo (n = 25). Median (interquartile range [IQR]) time to delivery of FC was 29 min (23–40 min) compared with 60 min (40– 80 min) for Cryo (P = 0.0001). All 62 patients were hypofibrinogenaemic before receiving FC or Cryo (FC: median FIBTEM A5, 8 mm [IQR, 7–9 mm]; Cryo: median FIBTEM A5, 9 mm [IQR, 5–10 mm]). In the FC arm patients received a median of 3 g FC (IQR, 2–4 g), and in the Cryo arm patients received a median of 8 units of Cryo (IQR, 8–14 units). Restoration of fibrinogen levels was achieved in both arms after the intervention. Blood product transfusion, fluid resuscitation and thromboembolic complications were similar in both arms. Overall mortality was 15.3%, with more deaths in the FC arm. Conclusion: Fibrinogen replacement in severely injured trauma patients with major haemorrhage and hypofibrinogenaemia was achieved substantially faster using FC compared with Cryo. Fibrinogen levels increased appropriately using either product. The optimal method for replacing fibrinogen in traumatic haemorrhage is controversial. Our results will inform the design of a larger trial powered to assess patient-centred outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)32-46
Number of pages15
JournalCritical Care and Resuscitation
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2021


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