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Slovenska pediatrija 2016; 23: 4-13


Research article

EPIDEMIOLOGY OF SERIOUS INJURIES IN CHILDREN

K. Dejak Gornik
Klinični oddelek za travmatologijo, Kirurška klinika, Univerzitetni klinični center Ljubljana, Ljubljana, Slovenija

T. Havliček
Klinični oddelek za travmatologijo, Kirurška klinika, Univerzitetni klinični center Ljubljana, Ljubljana, Slovenija

M. Pavčnik
Klinični oddelek za otroško kirurgijo in intenzivno terapijo, Kirurška klinika,<br /> Katedra za pediatrijo, Medicinska fakulteta, Univerza v Ljubljani, Ljubljana

Abstract

Background. Injuries are the single leading cause of childhood mortality in developed countries and an important cause of long-term disabilities. The aim of this study was to analyse the data of severely injured children admitted to the Paediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU), Department of Paediatric Surgery and Intensive Care, University Medical Centre Ljubljana. Methods. The medical records of injured children admitted to PICU, Department of Paediatric Surgery and Intensive Care, University Medical Centre Ljubljana from January 2010 to December 2012 were retrospectively examined. Results. In the study period, 59 children were admitted to PICU following trauma, 44 of whom were boys. The mean age was 5 years (range 2 weeks to 14 years). The leading causes of injuries were falls (42%) and traffic-related accidents (41%). Blunt head injuries were the most frequent, comprising 80% of all injuries. Non-accidental injuries represented 3.4% of injuries. The overall mortality in the study population was 10%. At discharge, 64% of children were problem free, while 36% of children suffered long-term functional disabilities. Conclusion. Blunt injuries are the most common injuries in the paediatric population. The most frequent mechanisms of injury are traffic-related accidents and falls. Blunt traumatic brain injury is the most common cause of death and long-term disability. Improvements throughout the continuum of trauma care (from pre-hospital care to rehabilitation) as well as vigorous preventive public health measures are needed to reduce the rates of paediatric trauma morbidity and mortality

Key words: injury, polytrauma, head injury, child


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