A short-cut review was carried out to establish whether the size of chest drain inserted is important in haemothoraces. Forty-nine papers were found of which four presented the best evidence to answer the clinical question. The author, date and country of publication, patient group studied, study type, relevant outcomes, results and study weaknesses of these best papers are shown in table 4. The clinical bottom line is that while the available evidence suggests that small bore drains may be as effective as large bore drains in resolving traumatic haemothoraces without additional complications, there is insufficient evidence currently available to recommend a change to standard practice (ie, large bore drains).
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