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Assessing global risk factors for non-fatal injuries from road traffic accidents and falls in adults aged 35–70 years in 17 countries: a cross-sectional analysis of the Prospective Urban Rural Epidemiological (PURE) study

Abstract

Objectives To assess risk factors associated with non-fatal injuries (NFIs) from road traffic accidents (RTAs) or falls.

Methods Our study included 151 609 participants from the Prospective Urban Rural Epidemiological study. Participants reported whether they experienced injuries within the past 12 months that limited normal activities. Additional questions elicited data on risk factors. We employed multivariable logistic regression to analyse data.

Results Overall, 5979 participants (3.9% of 151 609) reported at least one NFI. Total number of NFIs was 6300: 1428 were caused by RTAs (22.7%), 1948 by falls (30.9%) and 2924 by other causes (46.4%). Married/common law status was associated with fewer falls, but not with RTA. Age 65–70 years was associated with fewer RTAs, but more falls; age 55–64 years was associated with more falls. Male versus female was associated with more RTAs and fewer falls. In lower-middle-income countries, rural residence was associated with more RTAs and falls; in low-income countries, rural residence was associated with fewer RTAs. Previous alcohol use was associated with more RTAs and falls; current alcohol use was associated with more falls. Education was not associated with either NFI type.

Conclusions This study of persons aged 35–70 years found that some risk factors for NFI differ according to whether the injury is related to RTA or falls. Policymakers may use these differences to guide the design of prevention policies for RTA-related or fall-related NFI.

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