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J Korean Soc Traumatol. 2009 Dec;22(2):148-153. Korean. Original Article.
Chang HW , Sim MS , Han SK , Song HG .
Department of Emergency Medicine, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea. cprking@skku.edu
Department of Emergency Medicine, Kangbuk Samsung Hospital, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
Abstract

PURPOSE: The osmolar gap increases in proportion to the ethanol level. Some previous studies have shown that the correlation between the osmolar gap and the ethanol level is weak in trauma patient by using an indirect comparison with other patients. We conducted a direct comparison of the correlation of the osmolar gap to the ethanol level between trauma patients and non-trauma patients. We also analyzed the accuracy of the estimated ethanol level between the two groups. METHODS: The research candidates were adult patients who had visited the emergency department of our hospital from December 2003 to November 2008. By using a retrospective chart review, we classified them into three subgroups: non-trauma without shock, trauma without shock, and trauma with shock. In each group, we compared the correlation between the osmolar gap and the measured ethanol level, and we analyzed the accuracy of the estimated ethanol level by using Lin's concordance correlation coefficient. RESULTS: Four hundred forty-seven patients were enrolled in this study. For correlation of the osmolar gap and the measured ethanol level, Pearson's correlation coefficient was 0.916 in all patients, 0.939 in non-trauma without shock patients, 0.917 in trauma without shock patients, and 0.844 in trauma with shock patients. In the analysis of the accuracy of the estimated ethanol level by using Lin's concordance correlation coefficient, the accuracy in trauma with shock patients was lower than that in non-trauma without shock patients. CONCLUSION: We found that the correlation between the osmolar gap and the measured ethanol level in the patient group with trauma was lower than it was in the patient group without trauma. Moreover trauma patients with shock had a lower accuracy of the estimated ethanol level than non-trauma patients.

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