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Living on a Prayer: Religious Affiliation and Trauma Outcomes

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Research has shown that religious affiliation is associated with reduced all cause mortality. The aim of this study was to determine if religious affiliation predicts trauma-specific mortality and length of stay. Patients admitted to our urban Level I trauma center in 2008 were examined; the main study categorization was based on endorsement of a specific religious affiliation during a standard intake procedure. Bivariate and multivariate analysis was performed with in-hospital mortality and length of stay as the outcomes of interest, adjusting for demographic and injury severity characteristics. A total of 2303 patients were included in the study. Forty-six per cent endorsed a religious affiliation. Patients with a religious affiliation were more likely to be female, Hispanic, and older than those who reported no affiliation (P < 0.001). There was no difference in length of hospital stay. On bivariate analysis those without religious affiliation were more likely to die (P = 0.01), but this difference disappeared after adjusting for covariates. Although we could not identify a statistical association between religious affiliation and mortality on multivariate analysis, there was an association with injury severity suggesting religious patients were less severely injured.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Surgery, Howard University College of Medicine, Washington, D.C., USA 2: Department of Surgery, Howard University College of Medicine, Washington, D.C, USA 3: Department of Psychiatry, Howard University College of Medicine, Washington, D.C., USA

Publication date: January 1, 2012

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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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