Eliason Lab

The Eliason Lab, led by Dr. Jonathan L. Eliason, seeks to understand and treat vascular trauma and sources of uncontrolled hemorrhage.

Current Research in the Eliason Laboratory

The Eliason Laboratory, led by Dr. Jonathan L. Eliason, has a focus area of hemorrhage control, specifically with vascular injury involvement. This effort has included the development of medical devices for hemorrhage-control. The research efforts on controlling hemorrhage due to trauma, particularly in austere environments, grew out of Dr. Eliason's experience in the U.S. Air Force, seeing firsthand just how critical hemorrhage control is to the early survival of injured military personnel and civilians. We have since developed a novel device to control bleeding and hemorrhagic shock. Our scientific work also looks at many parameters of bleeding to identify risk factors and how to diminish them.

The Problem

Traumatic injury is especially lethal in austere environments, like those of most combat situations. To help prevent hemorrhagic shock and lengthen the survival window following trauma, we have co-developed a novel device to control bleeding from pelvic and abdominal injuries that can be used in resource-limited settings. But not all patients benefit, and prolonged use of the device can have serious complications.

The Approach

In our hemorrhage control work, we look at the effects of prolonged balloon occlusion in the context of traumatic injury. As with other studies related to trauma, the wide variability in injury patterns and patient populations as well as other factors make it challenging to determine the optimal ways of intervening. We have attempted to be very specific in analyzing outcomes by controlling as many of the variables as possible ,except the one of interest.

Contributions to Science

Dr. Eliason co-developed the ER-REBOA™ catheter (Eliason – Rasmussen Resuscitative Endovascular Balloon Occlusion of the Aorta), a balloon catheter to staunch blood flow to the lower body but keep blood circulating to the brain, heart and lungs following a traumatic injury. Drs. Eliason and Rasmussen are credited with bringing this approach to hemorrhage control to austere and combat environments.
Since its approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 2015, the ER-REBOA™ device has been used in Level 1 civilian trauma centers and emergency departments across the United States. The military has added REBOA to its clinical practice guidelines for hemorrhage control. The work has shown the physiologic impact of balloon occlusion, including prolonged occlusion, and our research is helping optimize REBOA use for traumatic injury to save lives and improve survivors' quality of life.

Dr. Eliason discusses the research being conducted in his laboratory.