Tranexamic acid for significant traumatic brain injury (The CRASH-3 trial): Statistical analysis plan for an international, randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial

Ian Roberts, LSHTM, London, WC1E 7HT, UK.
Antonio Belli, Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Birmingham, UK.
Amy Brenner, (RLRCC), Holy Family Hospital, Rawalpindi, Pakistan
Rizwana Chaudhri, University College Hospital, Ibadan, Nigeria.
Bukola Fawole, University College Hospital, Ibadan, Nigeria.
Tim Harris, Barts Health and Queen Mary University, London, UK.
Rashid Jooma, The Aga Khan University
Temitayo Shokunb, niversity College Hospital, Ibadan, Nigeria
Haleema Shakur, Clinical Trials Unit, LSHTM, London, WC1E 7HT, UK.


Worldwide, traumatic brain injury (TBI) kills or hospitalises over 10 million people each year. Early intracranial bleeding is common after TBI, increasing the risk of death and disability. Tranexamic acid reduces blood loss in surgery and death due to bleeding in trauma patients with extra-cranial injury. Early administration of tranexamic acid in TBI patients might limit intracranial bleeding, reducing death and disability. The CRASH-3 trial aims to provide reliable evidence on the effect of tranexamic acid on death and disability in TBI patients. We will randomly allocate about 13,000 TBI patients to an intravenous infusion of tranexamic acid or matching placebo in addition to usual care. This paper presents a protocol update (version 2.1) and statistical analysis plan for the CRASH-3 trial. Results: The primary outcome is head injury death in hospital within 28 days of injury for patients treated within 3 hours of injury (deaths in patients treated after 3 hours will also be reported). Because there are strong scientific reasons to expect that tranexamic acid will be most effective in patients treated immediately after injury and less effective with increasing delay, the effect in patients treated within one hour of injury is of particular interest. Secondary outcomes are all-cause and cause-specific mortality, vascular occlusive events (myocardial infarction, pulmonary embolism, deep vein thrombosis, stroke), disability based on the Disability Rating Scale and measures suggested by patient representatives, seizures, neurosurgical intervention, neurosurgical blood loss, days in intensive care and adverse events. Sub-group analyses will examine the effect of tranexamic acid on head injury death stratified by time to treatment, severity of TBI and baseline risk. Conclusion: The CRASH-3 trial will provide reliable evidence of the effectiveness and safety of tranexamic acid in patients with acute TBI. Registration: International Standard Randomised Controlled Trials registry ( ISRCTN15088122) 19/07/2011, and