Geriatric injuries among patients attending a regional hospital in Shinyanga Tanzania

  • Phillipo L. Chalya Consultant General Surgeon and Senior Lecturer CUHAS-Bugando
  • Isidori H. Ngayomela Orthopedic surgeon and Lecturer CUHAS-Bugando
  • Nkinda Mbelenge Orthopedic Surgeon and Lecturer CUHAS-Bugando
  • Ramesh M. Dass Orthopedic Surgeon and Lecturer CUHAS-Bugando
  • Mabula Mchembe Senior Lecturer-MUHAS
  • Sospatro E. Ngallaba Senior Lecturer CUHAS-Bugando
  • Joseph B. Mabula Senior Consultant Surgeon and Senior Lecturer CUHAS-Bugando
  • Japhet M. Gilyoma Senior Consultant Surgeon and Senior Lecturer CUHAS-Bugando
Keywords: Geriatric injuries, injury characteristics, outcome, Tanzania

Abstract

Geriatric injuries pose a major challenge to surgeons and general practitioners practicing in developing countries. The objective of this study was to determine the prevalence, injury characteristics and outcome of geriatric injury among patients at Shinyanga Regional Hospital in Tanzania. Data was collected using a pre-tested, coded questionnaire and analyzed using SPSS computer system. A total of 94 geriatric trauma patients constituting 22.7% of all trauma admissions were studied. The male to female ratio was 1.4:1. Their mean age was 68.5 years (ranged 60-98 years). Premorbid illness was reported in 38.3% of patients. Most injuries were intentional in fifty-three (56.4%) patients. Assaults, falls and road traffic crashes were the most common mechanism of injuries in 52.1%, 19.1% and 11.7% of cases, respectively. The majority of cases of assault were females accounting for 64.6%. The majority of injuries (81.9%) occurred at home. Pre-hospital care was recorded in 5.3% of cases. The musculoskeletal (72.3%) and head (66.0%) regions were commonly affected. Soft tissue injuries (wounds) (89.4%) and fractures (52.2%) were the most common type of injuries. The majority of patients (90.4%) underwent surgical treatment of which wound debridement was the most common procedure performed in 91.8% of cases.  Complication rate was 39.4%. The mean length of hospital stay was 28.6 days (ranged 1 – 124 days). The length of hospital stay was significantly longer in patients with co-morbidities, long bone fractures and those with complications (P<0.05). Mortality rate was 14.9% and it was significantly related to advanced age, presence of pre-morbid illness, high injury severity score, severe head injuries and the need for ventilatory support (P< 0.05).Traumatic injuries in elderly constitute a major but preventable public health problem in Shinyanga region and contribute significantly to high morbidity and mortality.  Urgent preventive measures focusing at the root causes of the injuries and early appropriate treatment is highly needed to reduce the occurrence, morbidity and mortality associated with these injuries.

Author Biographies

Phillipo L. Chalya, Consultant General Surgeon and Senior Lecturer CUHAS-Bugando

Consultant surgeon and senior Lecturer in Surgery

Department of Surgery- CUHAS-Bugando

Isidori H. Ngayomela, Orthopedic surgeon and Lecturer CUHAS-Bugando
Orthopedic surgeon and Lecturer CUHAS-Bugando
Nkinda Mbelenge, Orthopedic Surgeon and Lecturer CUHAS-Bugando
Orthopedi Surgeon and Lecturer CUHAS-Bugando
Ramesh M. Dass, Orthopedic Surgeon and Lecturer CUHAS-Bugando
Orthopedi Surgeon and Lecturer CUHAS-Bugando
Mabula Mchembe, Senior Lecturer-MUHAS

Senior Lecturer-MUHAS

Department of Surgery

Sospatro E. Ngallaba, Senior Lecturer CUHAS-Bugando

Senior Lecturer CUHAS-Bugando

Department of Community Medicine

Joseph B. Mabula, Senior Consultant Surgeon and Senior Lecturer CUHAS-Bugando
senior consultant surgeon and senior Lecturer CUHAS-Bugando
Japhet M. Gilyoma, Senior Consultant Surgeon and Senior Lecturer CUHAS-Bugando
senior consultant surgeon and senior Lecturer CUHAS-Bugando
Published
2012-01-01
How to Cite
ChalyaP. L., NgayomelaI. H., MbelengeN., DassR. M., MchembeM., NgallabaS. E., MabulaJ. B., & GilyomaJ. M. (2012). Geriatric injuries among patients attending a regional hospital in Shinyanga Tanzania. Tanzania Journal of Health Research, 14(1). https://doi.org/10.4314/thrb.v14i1.4
Section
Articles

Journal Identifiers


eISSN: 1821-9241
print ISSN: 1821-6404