Pittet gets grant to study vitamins and lung infections

Jean-Francois Pittet, M.D., professor and vice chair of the UAB Department of Anesthesiology has been awarded a $300,000 research grant from the National Trauma Institute to examine the effect of antioxidant vitamins on patients who suffer severe trauma and have severe bleeding.

Patients with severe bleeding from trauma do not coagulate or clot properly prior to treatment. Antioxidant vitamins — vitamins C and E — have been shown to encourage coagulation, so their use could be very beneficial. 

“We hope to determine whether this low-cost and safe therapy, given early after severe trauma, will positively affect coagulation and significantly decrease lung infections in trauma patients,” said Pittet. “The results we obtain may help in the search for new treatments to reduce the severity of bleeding and infection after trauma injury.”

Pittet’s study is one of nine awarded grants this year by NTI, a non-profit organization dedicated to funding trauma research in the United States in an effort to reduce death and disability and the associated costs of trauma injury.