The burden of morbidity in polytrauma

  • KN Ozoilo
  • SD Peter
  • HC Nwadiaro
Keywords: injuries, morbidity, mortality, polytrauma, trauma.


Background: Trauma is a leading cause of death, hospitalization and disability for all ages under 45years. The development of complications in the clinical course could make management more complex and worsen the outcome. We evaluated our polytrauma patients with a view to elucidating the pattern of morbidity and mortality in our practice.
Methods: We prospectively studied the patients presenting to our institution with polytrauma over a one year period. Those who incurred any complications or died in the course of their management were extracted and studied. Survivors were followed up to the point of discharge and for two or three subsequent outpatient follow up visits.
Results: 131 patients presented over the study period out of which there were complications in 27 patients (20.6%). The most common complications were wound infections particularly in patients with compound extremity fractures. 80% of the deaths occurred in patients with severe head injury. Mortality was 10(7.6%) ;al l had associated severe head injury.
Conclusion: In fectious complications predominate in patients with polytrauma while head injury accounts for most of the mortality among patients presenting to the hospital. A more energetic management of these injuries is advocated as a way of reducing the morbidity and mortality associated with polytrauma.

Keywords: injuries, morbidity, mortality, polytrauma, trauma.


Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1596-2407