A study to investigate whether speed and road conditions have an effect on the physiological stability of sick and preterm babies undergoing inter-hospital transfer by ambulance

Hall, V 2017, A study to investigate whether speed and road conditions have an effect on the physiological stability of sick and preterm babies undergoing inter-hospital transfer by ambulance , DProf thesis, University of Salford.

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Abstract

Aim

The aim of this study was to investigate whether speed and road conditions have an effect on the physiological stability of sick and preterm babies undergoing inter-hospital transfer by ambulance.

Study Design

This was a quantitative observational study using primary data. The study compared the stability of physiological parameters (heart rate, arterial blood pressure, respiratory rate and blood oxygen saturation) against speed and g forces experienced in three dimensions, longitudinal direction (x-axis), lateral (y-axis) and vertical direction (z-axis). Data was collected using a DL1 Race–technology device with a 5Hz GPS receiver and digital accelerometer to measure the forces acting on the baby. Data was collected from twelve babies undergoing ambulance transfer between neonatal or paediatric units in the North West of England in a neonatal intensive care incubator mounted on an ambulance trolley. Seven complete data sets were analysed. Physiological variability was compared between the two types of road conditions: motorways and other roads.

Results

The babies demonstrated more stability during motorway journeys, though predictable situations in the journey promoted instability. Speed was not a factor in physiological instability, but acceleration and deceleration exerted pronounced effects on physiological status, particularly when combined with marked lateral forces. Other changes in physiological status during apparently stable transit require further investigation, as does the optimum positioning of the baby along or across the fore-and-aft axis of the ambulance.

This was the first study to investigate real-time physiological effects on live neonates during required transfer journeys including measurements in three axes throughout the episode while exerting no research effect on the babies.

Item Type: Thesis (DProf)
Schools: Schools > School of Health and Society > Centre for Applied Research in Health, Welfare and Policy
Depositing User: Professor Tony Long
Date Deposited: 19 Jan 2018 12:46
Last Modified: 19 Jan 2018 12:46
URI: http://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/42638

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