Background There is a worldwide shortage of population data about non-fatal injury burden. The aim of this population-based, nested, longitudinal study was to quantify patient outcomes in the first 5 years after injury.
Methods Adult (>17 years), major trauma patients registered by the population-based Victorian State Trauma Registry, injured between July 2011 and June 2012, were followed up by telephone at 6-months and 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 years post-injury to collect function (GOS-E), health status (EQ-5D), return to work, environmental impact (CHIEF-SF) and post-traumatic stress disorder (IES-R) data. Data from the 3-year time point are presented.
Results Of 2,757 patients, 333 died in-hospital and 99 opted-out of follow-up. Of the remaining 2,325 patients, 10% died before 3 years. The mean (SD) age of surviving patients was 49 (21) years, 73% were male, 89% were unintentional cases. Road traffic injury (37%) and falls (32%) were common causes. 62% were working/studying before injury. 84% were followed up at 3 years. 29% reported upper good recovery on the GOS-E, and 69% of those working/studying before injury had resumed work/study. Prevalence of problems on the EQ-5D items varied; 37% for mobility, 21% for personal care, 47% for usual activities, 50% for pain/discomfort and 41% for anxiety/depression. Mean CHIEF-SF scores indicated greater problems than the CHIEF norms for the transport (0.77 vs 0.48), natural environment (1.26 vs 0.63), physical structure of other surroundings (1.00 vs 0.44), home help (0.51 vs 0.35) and health care (0.49 vs 0.34) items. IES-R scores for 43% showed no symptoms; 21% had some symptoms and 18% scored >33 which is indicative of a clinical diagnosis of PTSD.
Conclusions At 3-years post-injury, ongoing problems were prevalent. The data provides valuable information about the time course for recovery and key problems faced by patients in their recovery.
- Trauma care
- longitudinal study
- injury burden