Two months after landing on Mars, an astronaut suffers from a fall during an extravehicular activity, resulting in a fractured femur. Because it is impossible to return home, the remaining crew must manage the injury.

Imray et al. argued that modern day explorers will encounter “environments where physiologic and geographical extremes necessitate prompt and innovative approaches to rescue, medical care, and transportation.” A human settlement in deep space perfectly illustrates this statement, particularly when considering the challenges of providing emergency medical and trauma care.

Experts have estimated that the most significant risks for space exploration missions are trauma, hemorrhagic shock, and infections.2–4  To some extent, the likelihood of medical events can be estimated from analog ground populations, both military and civilian, and data gathered during human spaceflight experience.2,5,6  For example,...

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