3 years ago

Long-term health status and trajectories of seriously injured patients: A population-based longitudinal study

Shanthi Ameratunga, Pam M. Simpson, Rodney Judson, Mark Fitzgerald, James E. Harrison, Sandra Braaf, Warwick J. Teague, Jennie Ponsford, Belinda J. Gabbe, Ronan A. Lyons, Peter A. Cameron, Andrew Nunn, Alex Collie

by Belinda J. Gabbe, Pam M. Simpson, Peter A. Cameron, Jennie Ponsford, Ronan A. Lyons, Alex Collie, Mark Fitzgerald, Rodney Judson, Warwick J. Teague, Sandra Braaf, Andrew Nunn, Shanthi Ameratunga, James E. Harrison

Background

Improved understanding of the quality of survival of patients is crucial in evaluating trauma care, understanding recovery patterns and timeframes, and informing healthcare, social, and disability service provision. We aimed to describe the longer-term health status of seriously injured patients, identify predictors of outcome, and establish recovery trajectories by population characteristics.

Methods and findings

A population-based, prospective cohort study using the Victorian State Trauma Registry (VSTR) was undertaken. We followed up 2,757 adult patients, injured between July 2011 and June 2012, through deaths registry linkage and telephone interview at 6-, 12-, 24-, and 36-months postinjury. The 3-level EuroQol 5 dimensions questionnaire (EQ-5D-3L) was collected, and mixed-effects regression modelling was used to identify predictors of outcome, and recovery trajectories, for the EQ-5D-3L items and summary score. Mean (SD) age of participants was 50.8 (21.6) years, and 72% were male. Twelve percent (n = 333) died during their hospital stay, 8.1% (n = 222) of patients died postdischarge, and 155 (7.0%) were known to have survived to 36-months postinjury but were lost to follow-up at all time points. The prevalence of reporting problems at 36-months postinjury was 37% for mobility, 21% for self-care, 47% for usual activities, 50% for pain/discomfort, and 41% for anxiety/depression. Continued improvement to 36-months postinjury was only present for the usual activities item; the adjusted relative risk (ARR) of reporting problems decreased from 6 to 12 (ARR 0.87, 95% CI: 0.83–0.90), 12 to 24 (ARR 0.94, 95% CI: 0.90–0.98), and 24 to 36 months (ARR 0.95, 95% CI: 0.95–0.99). The risk of reporting problems with pain or discomfort increased from 24- to 36-months postinjury (ARR 1.06, 95% CI: 1.01, 1.12). While loss to follow-up was low, there was responder bias with patients injured in intentional events, younger, and less seriously injured patients less likely to participate; therefore, these patient subgroups were underrepresented in the study findings.

Conclusions

The prevalence of ongoing problems at 3-years postinjury is high, confirming that serious injury is frequently a chronic disorder. These findings have implications for trauma system design. Investment in interventions to reduce the longer-term impact of injuries is needed, and greater investment in primary prevention is needed.

Publisher URL: http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article

DOI: 10.1371/journal.pmed.1002322

You might also like
Discover & Discuss Important Research

Keeping up-to-date with research can feel impossible, with papers being published faster than you'll ever be able to read them. That's where Researcher comes in: we're simplifying discovery and making important discussions happen. With over 19,000 sources, including peer-reviewed journals, preprints, blogs, universities, podcasts and Live events across 10 research areas, you'll never miss what's important to you. It's like social media, but better. Oh, and we should mention - it's free.

  • Download from Google Play
  • Download from App Store
  • Download from AppInChina

Researcher displays publicly available abstracts and doesn’t host any full article content. If the content is open access, we will direct clicks from the abstracts to the publisher website and display the PDF copy on our platform. Clicks to view the full text will be directed to the publisher website, where only users with subscriptions or access through their institution are able to view the full article.