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Thomas M. Scalea, MD

The Honorable Francis X. Kelly Distinguished Professor of Trauma Surgery 

Academic Title:


Primary Appointment:


Administrative Title:

Director, Program in Trauma

Additional Title:

Physician-in-Chief, R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center; System Chief for Critical Care Services, University of Maryland Medical System


Shock Trauma Director's Office

Phone (Primary):

(410) 328-8976



Education and Training

  • University of Virginia, BA, 1974
  • Medical College of Virginia, MD, 1978
  • Residency, Upstate Medical Center, General Surgery, 1983
  • Fellowship, New York Medical College-Valhalla, Critical Care/Trauma, 1984


Dr. Scalea is globally recognized for his pioneer in leadership and advancing the field of shock and injury care. As Physician in Chief of the R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center, he heads the only freestanding trauma center in the nation and the best known trauma center in the world. It cares for over 8000 critically injured patients annually with a 96% survival.

Dr. Scalea remains a busy clinician, working over 100 per week and performing over 600 operative cases per year. Under his leadership, the Program in Trauma has expanded clinical services including caring for the emergency general surgery patients at the University of Maryland Medical Center. Dr. Scalea served as System Chief for critical care for the medical system and has built a region wide critical care  program comprised of 18 ICUs and more than 300 beds.

In 2001, Dr. Scalea established a military training program, CSTARS that has trained more than 4000 Air Force personnel before they are deployed into war. Dr. Scalea has led international relief missions, including taking the only non-Chinese team to Sichuan and spearheading a six-month relief project after the Haitian earthquake, visiting Haiti four times himself. Dr. Scalea has health leadership positions in many national organizations and has received many local, regional and national honors. Dr. Scalea is a funded investigator and remains a prolific investigator mentoring many investigators from his department.

Research/Clinical Keywords

Emergency Medicine, Shock Trauma, Trauma Surgery, Spinal Cord Injury, Shock, Critical Care

Highlighted Publications

  • Scalea TM, Aarabi B, , Bochicchio G, McCunn M, Shih D, McQuillan K. Increased intraabdominal, intrathoracic and intracranial pressure after severe brain injury: Multiple compartment syndrome. Journal of Trauma. 62:647-656, 2007.
  • Murthi SB, Dutton RP, Edelman BB, Scalea TM, Hess J. Transfusion medicine in trauma patients. Expert Reviews Hematol. 1:99-109, 2008.
  • Scalea TM. While my guitar gently weeps: the 2015 Presidential Address of the AAST. Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery. 80:1-7, 2016.

Additional Publication Citations

Scalea TM. While my guitar gently weeps: the 2015 presidential address of the AAST. Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery. 80:1-7, 2016.

Parmi N, Hu P, Mackenzie C, Yang S, Bartlett S, Scalea T, Stein DM. Automated continuous vital signs predict use of uncrossed matched blood and massive transfusion following trauma. Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery. 80:6;897-906, 2016.

Chiara O, Cimbanassi S, Biffl W, Leppaniemi A, Henry, S, Scalea TM, et al. International consensus conference on open abdomen in trauma. Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery. 80:173-183, 2016.

 Bruns BR, Ahmad SA, O’Meara L, Tesoriero R, Lauerman M, klyushnenkova E, Kozar R, Scalea TM, Diaz JJ. Nontrauma open abdomens: A prospective observational study. Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery. 80:631-636, 2016.

Perl VJU, Lerous B, Cook MR, Watson J, Fair K, Martin DT, Kerby JD, Williams C, Inaba K, Wade CE, Cotton BA, Del Junco DJ, Fox EE, Scalea TM, Tilley BC, Holcomb JB, Schreiber MA and on behalf of the PROPPR Study Group. Damage control resuscitation and emergency laparotomy: Findings form the PROPPR study. Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery. 80:568-575, 2016.

Scalea TM, Rubinson L, Tran Q, Jones KM, Rea JH, Stein DM, Bartlett ST, O’Connor JV. Critical care resuscitation unit: An innovative solution to expedite transfer of patients with time-sensitive critical illness. American College of Surgeons. 222:614-623, 2016.

Brenner M, Hoehn M, Teeter W, Stein D, Scalea T. Trading scalpels for sheaths: catheter-based treatment of vascular injury can be effectively performed by acute care surgeons trained in endovascular techniques. J Trauma and Acute Care Surgery. 80:783-786, 2016.

 Constini TW, Coimbra R, Holcomb JB, Podbielski JM, Catalano R, Blackburn A, Scalea TM, Stein DM, Williams L, Conflitti J, Keeney S, Suleiman G, Zhou T, Sperry J, Skiada D, Inaba K, Williams BH, Minei JP, Privette A, Mackersie RC, Robinson BR, Moore FO, AAST Pelvic Fracture Study Group. Current management of severe pelvfic fractures: results of an AAST Multi-institutiional trial. J Trauma Acute Care Surg. 80:717-725, 2016.

Ginsberg Z, Thurman P, Scalea T, Stein, D. Extracorporeal liver support for trauma-induced hepatic dysfunction. J Trauma Acute Care Surg. 80:1039-1044, 2016.

Bruns B, Tesoriero RB, Narayan M, O’Meara L, Lauerman MH, Eaton B, Scalea TM, Diaz JJ. Acute care surgery and emergency general surgery: Addition by subtraction. J Trauma Acute Care Surg. 81:131-136, 2016.

Oskutis MQ, Lauerman MH, Kufera JA, Shanmuganathan K, Burch C, Kerns T, Ho S, Scalea TM, Stein DM. Are frailty markers associated with serious thoracic and spinal injuries among motor vehicle crash occupants? J Trauma Acute Care Surg. 81:156-160, 2016.

Dowling MB, Chaturvedi A, MacIntire IC, Javvaji V, Gustin J, Raghavan SR, Scalea TM, Narayan M. Determination of efficacy of a novel alginate dressing in a lethal arterial injury model in swine. Injury. 2016. DOI: 10.1016/j.injury.2016.05.003

Glaser J, Cardarelli C, Galvagno S, Scalea T, Murthi S. Bridging the gap: hybrid cardiac echo in the critically ill. Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery. 81:S157-161, 2016.

Ansaloni L, Pisano M, Coccolini F, Peitzman AP, Fingerhut A, Catena F, Agresta F, Allegri A, Bailey I, Zsolt BJ, Bendinelli C, Biffl W, Bonavina L, Borzellino G, Brunetti F, Burlew CC, Campanelli G, Campanile FC, Ceresoli M, Chiara O, Civil I, Coimbra R, DeMoya M, DiSaverio S, Fraga GP, Gupta S, Kashuk J, Kelly MD, Khokha V, Jeekel H, Latifi R, Leppaniemi A, Maier RV, Marzi I, Moore F, Piazzalunga D, Sakakushev B, Sartelli M, Scalea T, Stahel PF, Taviloglu K, Tugnoli G, Uranues S, Velmahos GC, Wani I, Weber DG, Viale P, Sugrue M, Ivatury R, Kluger Y, Gurusamy KS, Moore EE. 2016 WSES guidelines on Acute Calculous Cholecystitis. World Journal of Emergency Surgery. Accepted. WJES-D-16-00048R1

Bradley M, Bonds B, Chang L, Yang S, Hu P, Li Hsaio-chi, Brenner M, Scalea T, Stein D. Open chest cardiac massage offers no benefit over closed chest compressions in patients with traumatic cardiac arrest. J Trauma Acute Care Surg. 81:849-854, 2016.

 Peep T, Chouliaras K, Eastman A, Lauerman M, Teixeira P, DuBose J, Minei J, Scalea T, Demetriades D. Discontinuity of the bowel following damage control operation revisited. A multi-institutional study. World Journal of Surgery. Accepted, 2016.

Laser A. Bruns BR, Kufera J, Kim A, Feeney T, Tesoriero RB, Lauerman MH, Sliker CW, Scalea TM, Stein DM. Long-term follow up of blunt cerebrovascular injuries: does time heal all wounds? J Trauma Acute Care Surg. 81:1063-1067, 2016.

Jenkins DH, Cioffi WG, Cocanour CS, Davis KA, Fabian TC, Jurkovich GJ, Rozycki GS, Scalea TM, Stassen NA, Stewart RM. Position statement of the coalition for National Trauma Research (CNTR) on the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine (NASEM) Report: A national trauma care ystem: integrating military and civilian trauma systems to achieve zero preventable deaths after injury. J Trauma Acute Care Surgr. J Trauma Acute Care Surgerg. 81:816-818, 2016.

Pajoumand M, Kufera JA, Bonds BW, Devabhakthuni S, Boswell S, Hesselton K, Scalea TM, Stein DM. Dexmedetomidine as an adjunct for sedation in patients with traumatic brain injury. J Trauma Acute Care Surg. 81:345-51, 2016.

Dezman ZD, Comer AC, Narayan M, Scalea TM, Hirshon JM, Smith GS. Alcohol consumption decreases lactate clearance in acutely injured patients. Injury.47:1908-12, 2016..

Dubose JJ, Scalea TM, Brenner M, Skiada D, Inaba K, Cannon J, Moore L, Holcomb J, Turay D, Arbabi CN, Kirkpatrick A, Xiao J, Skarupa D, Poulin N; AAST AORTA Study Group. The AAST prospective aortic occlusion for resuscitation in trauma and acute care surgery (AORTA) registry: Data on contemporary utilization and outcomes of aortic occlusion and resuscitative balloon occlusion of the aorta (REBOA). J Trauma Acute Care Surg. 81:409-419, 2016.

 Tesoriero R, Bruns B, Stein D, Kozar R, Boswell S, Scalea T, Brenner M, Narayan M. Angiographic embolization for hemorrhage following pelvic fracture: Is it “time” for a paradigm shift.” J Trauma Acute Care Surgery. 82:18-26, 2017.

 Hsu C, Stein D, Haac B, Tisherman S, Kufera J, Scalea T, McQuillan K. Outcome of suicidal hanging patients and the role of targeted temperature management in hanging-induced cardiac arrest. J Trauma Acute Care Surgery 2016, JT-D-16-05396R1.

Di Saverio S, Birindelli A, Kelly MD, Catena F, Weber DG, Sartelli M, Sugrue M, De Moya M, Gomes CA, Bhangu A, Agresta F, Moore EE, Soreide K, Griffiths E, De Castro S, Kashuk J, Kluger Y, Leppaniemi A, Ansaloni L, Andersson M, Coccolini F, Coimbra R, Gurusamy KS, Campanile FC, Biffl W, Chiara O, Moore F, Peitzman AB, Fraga GP, Costa D, Maier RV, Rizoli S, Balogh ZJ, Bendinelli C, Cirocchio R, Tonini V, Piccinini A, Tugnoli G, Jovine E, Persiani R, Biondi A, Scalea T, Stahel P, Ivatury R, Velmahos G, Andersson R. WSES Jerusalem guidelines for diagnosis and treatment of acute appendicitis. Review Article World J Emerg Surg. 11:25, 2016.

Teeter WA, Romagnoli A, Li H, Yang S, Hu PF, Stein D, Scalea TM, Brenner ML. Paradigm shift inb hemorrhagic traumatic arrest: REBOA is at least an effective as RTACC. J of Am Co of Surgeons. 223:S155. 2016.

 Saksobhavivat N, Shanmuganathan K, Boscak AR, Sliker CW, Stein DM, Bodanapally UK, Archer-Arroyo K, Miller LA, Fleiter TR, Alexander MT, Mirvis SE, Scalea TM. Diagnostic accuracy of triple-contrast multi-dector computed tomography for detection of penetrating gastrointenstinal injury: a prospective study. Eur Radiol. 26:4107-4120, 2016.

 Scalea T. Repainting the ceiling: Do patient safety and satisfaction initiatives make things safer or more satisfying? WTA 2016 Presidential Address. Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery. 81:997,1002. 2016.

 Inaba K, Byerly S, Bush LD, Martin MJ, Martin DT, Peck KA, Barmparas G, Bradley MJ, Hazelton JP, Coimbra R, Choudhry AJ, Brown CVR, Ball CG, Cherry-Bukowiec JR, Burlew CC, Joseph B, Dunn J, Minshall CT, Carrick MM, Berg GM, Demetriades D, and the WTA C-Spine Study Group. Cervical spinal clearance: A prospective Western Trauma Association Multi-institutional Trial. J Trauma Acute Care Surg 81:1122-1130, 2016.

 Lauerman MH, DuBose JJ, Stein DM, Galvagno SM, Bradley MJ, Diaz J, Scalea TM. Evolution of fascial closure optimization in damage control laparotomy. Am Surg. 82:1178-1182, 2017.

Ferrada P, Ivatury RR, Spain DA, Davis KA, Aboutanos M, Fildes JJ, Scalea TM. International rotations: a valuable source to supplement operative experience for actue-care surgery, trauma and surgical critical care fellows. J Trauma Acute Care Surg. 82:5157, 2017.

 Saksobhavivat N, Shanmuganathan K, Chen HH, DuBose JJ, Richard H, Khan MA, Menaker J, Mirvis SE, Scalea TM. Blunt splenic injury: Use of a multidector CT-based splenic injury grading system and clinical parameters for triage of patients of admission. Radiology. 274,702-711, 2017.

Glaser J, Vasquez M, Cardarelli C, Galvagno S, Stein D, Murthi S, Scalea T. Through the looking glass: early non-invasive imaging in TBI predicts the need for interventions. Trauma Surgery & Acute Care Open. 2016,1(1)e000019;DOI 10.1136/tsaco-2016-0000


Awards and Affiliations

  • Founding member, P.U.L.S.E., National Institutes of Health/National Heart, Lung, Blood Institute, 2000-2008
  • NIAF Award 2010
  • Lifetime Achievement Award in Trauma Resuscitation Science, 2011
  • President American Association for the Surgery of Trauma  2014-2015
  • President Western Trauma Association  2015-2016
  • Executive Director of the Panamerican Trauma Society 2016-Present

Previous Positions

  • State University of New York, Downstate Medical Center/King’s County Hospital, 1984-1997
  • Francis X. Kelly Professor of Trauma Surgery, University of Maryland, Baltimore, MD, 2002-2013
  • Chief, Division of Trauma Surgery, University of Maryland, Baltimore, MD, 1997-2013
  • Chief, Division of Critical Care, University of Maryland at Baltimore, Baltimore, MD, 1998-2001