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The Impact of BMI on Adult Blunt Trauma Outcomes

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Traumatic injuries account for 10% of all mortalities in the United States. Globally, it is estimated that by the year 2030, 2.2 billion people will be overweight (BMI ≥ 25) and 1.1 billion people will be obese (BMI ≥ 30). Obesity is a known risk factor for suboptimal outcomes in trauma; however, the extent of this impact after blunt trauma remains to be determined. The incidence, prevalence, and mortality rates from blunt trauma by age, gender, cause, BMI, year, and geography were abstracted using datasets from 1) the Global Burden of Disease group 2) the United States Nationwide Inpatient Sample databank 3) two regional Level II trauma centers. Statistical analyses, correlations, and comparisons were made on a global, national, and state level using these databases to determine the impact of BMI on blunt trauma. The incidence of blunt trauma secondary to falls increased at global, national, and state levels during our study period from 1990 to 2015, with a corresponding increase in BMI at all levels (P < 0.05). Mortality due to fall injuries was higher in obese patients at all levels (P < 0.05). Analysis from Nationwide Inpatient Sample database demonstrated higher mortality rates for obese patients nationally, both after motor vehicle collisions and mechanical falls (P < 0.05). In obese and nonobese patients, regional data demonstrated a higher blunt trauma mortality rate of 2.4% versus 1.2%, respectively (P < 0.05) and a longer hospital length of stay of 4.13 versus 3.26 days, respectively (P = 0.018). The obesity rate and incidence of blunt trauma secondary to falls are increasing, with a higher mortality rate and longer length of stay in obese blunt trauma patients.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: From the *Department of Surgery, Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine, Marshall University, Huntington, West Virginia; 2: †Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine, The Multidisciplinary Institute for Interdisciplinary Research (MIIR), Marshall University, Huntington, West Virginia; and

Publication date: December 1, 2019

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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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