Background: Traumatic brain injury (TBI) and hemorrhage remain the leading causes of death after trauma. We have previously shown that a dose of valproic acid (VPA) at (150 mg/kg) can decrease brain lesion size and hasten neurologic recovery. The current Food and Drug Administration-approved dose of VPA is 60 mg/kg. We evaluate neurologic outcomes and brain lesion size of a single dose of VPA at a level currently within Food and Drug Administration-approved dose in swine subjected to TBI and hemorrhagic shock. Methods: Swine (n = 5/group) were subjected to TBI and 40% blood volume hemorrhage. Animals remained in shock for 2 hours before randomization to normal saline (NS) resuscitation alone (control), NS-VPA 150 mg/kg (VPA 150), or NS-VPA 50 mg/kg (VPA 50). Neurologic severity scores (range, 0-32) were assessed daily for 14 days, and brain lesion size was measured via magnetic resonance imaging on postinjury day (PID) 3. Results: Shock severity and laboratory values were similar in all groups. Valproic acid-treated animals demonstrated significantly less neurologic impairment on PID 1 and returned to baseline faster (PID 1 mean neurologic severity score, control = 22 ± 3 vs. VPA 150 mg/kg = 8 ± 7 or VPA 50 mg/kg = 6 ± 6; p = 0.02 and 0.003). Valproic acid-treated animals had significantly smaller brain lesion sizes (mean volume in mm3, control = 1,268.0 ± 241.2 vs. VPA 150 mg/kg = 620.4 ± 328.0 or VPA 50 mg/kg = 438.6 ± 234.8; p = 0.007 and 0.001). Conclusion: In swine subjected to TBI and hemorrhagic shock, VPA treatment, in a dose that is approved for clinical use, decreases brain lesion size and reduces neurologic impairment compared with resuscitation alone.
- Hemorrhagic shock
- Traumatic brain injury
- Valproic acid
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine