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Work-Related Injuries: Injury Characteristics, Survival, and Age Effect

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Work-related injuries impose a significant burden on society. The goal of this study was to delineate the epidemiology and the effect of age on type and mortality after occupational injuries. Patients 16 years of age or older sustaining work-related injuries were identified from the National Trauma Databank 12.0. The study population was stratified into four age groups: 16 to 35, 36 to 55, 56 to 65, and older than 65 years old. The demographic characteristics, type of injury, mechanism of injury, setting of injury, use of alcohol or other illicit drugs, and mortality were analyzed and related to age strata. Overall 67,658 patients were identified. There were 27,125 (40.1%) patients in the age group 16 to 35 years, 30,090 (44.5%) in the group 36 to 55 years, 6,618 (9.8%) in the group 56 to 65 years, and 3,825 (5.7%) older than 65 years. The injury severity increased significantly with age. Elderly patients were significantly more likely to sustain intracranial hemorrhages, spinal, and other skeletal injuries. The overall mortality was 2.9 per cent (1938) with the latter increasing significantly in a stepwise fashion with progressing age, becoming sixfold higher in patients older than 65 years (OR, 6.18; 95% CI, 4.78 to 7.80; P < 0.001). Our examination illustrates the associations between occupational injury and significant mortality that warrant intervention for mortality reduction. There is a stepwise-adjusted increase in mortality with progressing age.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: June 1, 2011

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  • The Southeastern Surgical Congress owns and publishes The American Surgeon monthly. It is the official journal of the Congress and the Southern California Chapter of the American College of Surgeons, which all members receive each month. The journal brings up to date clinical advances in surgical knowledge in a popular reference format. In addition to publishing papers presented at the annual meetings of the associated organizations, the journal publishes selected unsolicited manuscripts. If you have a manuscript you'd like to see published in The American Surgeon select "Information for Authors" from the Related Information options below. A Copyright Release Form must accompany all manuscripts submitted.
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