Table 1

Suggested skill sets required for treating military head, face, neck and eye injuries based on the papers identified in this study

Damage control surgeryAirwaySurgical cricothyroidotomy
HaemorrhageNeck access, packing, vessel ligation, vessel repair, scalp lacerations
Eye injuryLateral canthotomy and cantholysis
Acute in-theatre surgery (<24 hours)AirwaySurgical tracheostomy
Soft tissue injuryDebridement, cleaning and decontamination, packing, tension-free primary closure
Bone injuryStabilisation of grossly mobile facial bone fragments to protect the airway or control haemorrhage, debridement of open fractures to prevent infection, extraction of loose and damaged teeth to protect the airway
Eye injuryPrimary globe repair
Brain injuryLimited decompressive craniectomy, debridement of penetrating wound, intracranial pressure monitoring*
Delayed in-theatre surgery (24 hours 5 days)Bone injuryStabilisation of facial fractures using intermaxillary fixation, external fixation or internal fixation
Soft tissue injurySerial debridement, delayed primary closure, contextually appropriate reconstruction, only if no higher echelon available
Eye injuryDelayed lateral canthotomy, evisceration, enucleation, eyelid repair
Brain injuryFormal decompressive craniectomy
  • *Dependent on diagnostic CT scanning being available.