Injury survey at Chris Hani Baragwanath academic hospital, Soweto, South Africa

Khan, Nazia
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Introduction In 2007, South Africa was listed as one of the most violent countries in the world, with more than 30 000 trauma-related deaths recorded annually. The aim of the study was to determine the profile and nature of injuries sustained by patients attending the trauma unit at the Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital (CHBAH) over a three-month period 1st September -31th October 2017. Methods A cross-sectional study using record review was performed. Results A total of 5371 patients were admitted to the trauma unit. Male to female ratio of 2:1 was recorded. Only 22.69% reported that they were employed. The median age was 28 years (interquartile range 14-40 years). The predominant mechanism of injury was due to falls (32.37%), followed by assault (27.44%). The males were more likely to suffer any form of injury compared to females (p<0.05). The incidence of injuries due to falls showed the least difference between sexes with 58% in male compared to 42% in females. Assault injuries were 4.23 times more likely to result in head and neck injuries compared to any other mechanism of injury (OR:4.23, CI 3.52-5.08, p <0.00). Upon initial admission to the unit, 43.04% of patients were discharged home after initial treatment, while 41.54% were transferred to the orthopedic unit and nearly none (0. 15%) were referred to the maxillofacial unit. Conclusion Sex, employment status, age and area of residence influence the pattern of traumatic injuries. Falls injuries and assault were the predominant mechanisms of injury. Males were more likely to suffer from any form of injury than females. Assault injuries were more than four times more likely to result in head and neck injuries than any other mechanism of injury. Therefore, ongoing surveillance and education campaigns are recommended.
A research report submitted to the faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science in Dentistry in the Department of Maxillo-facial and Oral Surgery. Johannesburg, 2019