Demographic profile of severe traumatic brain injury admissions to Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital, 2006 - 2011
AbstractBackground. Paediatric traumatic brain injury (PTBI) is a major public health problem. However, recent epidemiological data for PTBI in South Africa (SA) are lacking.
Objectives. To establish a demographic profile of severe PTBI admissions to the Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital (RCWMCH) over a 5-year period, by investigating trends in annual admissions, age, sex, language, time and day of injury, and aetiology.
Methods. This retrospective, descriptive, quantitative study included children admitted to the RCWMCH with severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) between June 2006 and April 2011, who required intracranial monitoring. We used the Division of Paediatric Neurosurgery’s TBI database to identify cases for inclusion in the study and to gather demographic and injury information.
Results. Descriptive statistics suggested that: (i) the number of annual admissions did not vary substantially across the study period; (ii) the peak admission age was 6 years; (iii) more boys than girls were admitted; (iv) the major mechanism of injury was pedestrian road traffic accidents; and (v) most injuries occurred on weekends. These results are discussed against the backdrop of international research on PTBI and reflect the extent to which epidemiological findings on TBI in high-income countries compare with those from low- and middleincome countries such as SA.
Conclusion. The identification of aetiological factors and the description of demographic profiles of children sustaining TBI constitutes a basis for preventative policy administration and intervention strategies in SA.
Copyright remains in the Author’s name. The work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution - Noncommercial Works License. Authors are required to complete and sign an Author Agreement form that outlines Author and Publisher rights and terms of publication. The Agreement form should be uploaded along with other submissions files and any submission will be considered incomplete without it [forthcoming].
Material submitted for publication in the SAMJ is accepted provided it has not been published or submitted for publication elsewhere. Please inform the editorial team if the main findings of your paper have been presented at a conference and published in abstract form, to avoid copyright infringement. The SAMJ does not hold itself responsible for statements made by the authors.
Previously published images
If an image/figure has been previously published, permission to reproduce or alter it must be obtained by the authors from the original publisher and the figure legend must give full credit to the original source. This credit should be accompanied by a letter indicating that permission to reproduce the image has been granted to the author/s. This letter should be uploaded as a supplementary file during submission.