Large increase seen in emergency departments visits for traumatic brain injury

Between 2006 and 2010, there was a nearly 30 percent increase in the rate of visits to an emergency department for traumatic brain injury, which may be attributable to a number of factors, including increased awareness and diagnoses, according to a study in the May 14 issue of JAMA.

In the last decade, (TBI) garnered increased attention, including public campaigns and legislation to increase awareness and prevent . The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention describes TBI as a serious public health concern, according to background information in the article.

Jennifer R. Marin, M.D., M.Sc., of the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, and colleagues used data from the Nationwide Emergency Department Sample (NEDS) database to determine national trends in (ED) visits for TBI from 2006 through 2010. NEDS is a nationally representative data source including 25 million to 50 million visits from more than 950 hospitals each year, representing a 20 percent stratified sample of EDs.

The researchers found that in 2010 there were an estimated 2.5 million ED visits for TBI, representing a 29 percent increase in the rate of visits for TBI during the study period. By comparison, total ED visits increased by 3.6 percent. The majority of the increase in the incidence of TBI occurred in visits coded as concussion or unspecified head injury. Children younger than 3 years and adults older than 60 years had the largest increase in TBI rates. The majority of visits were for minor injuries and most patients were discharged from the ED.

The authors write that the increase in TBI among the very young and very old may indicate these age groups do not benefit as much from , such as concussion and helmet laws and safer sports' practices.

More information: DOI: 10.1001/jama.2014.3979

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Homeless with TBI more likely to visit ER

Mar 21, 2014

Homeless and vulnerably housed people who have suffered a traumatic brain injury at some point in their life are more likely to visit an Emergency Department, be arrested or incarcerated, or be victims of ...

Recommended for you

New ALS associated gene identified using innovative strategy

20 hours ago

Using an innovative exome sequencing strategy, a team of international scientists led by John Landers, PhD, at the University of Massachusetts Medical School has shown that TUBA4A, the gene encoding the Tubulin Alpha 4A protein, ...

Can bariatric surgery lead to severe headache?

20 hours ago

Bariatric surgery may be a risk factor for a condition that causes severe headaches, according to a study published in the October 22, 2014, online issue of Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurol ...

Bipolar disorder discovery at the nano level

21 hours ago

A nano-sized discovery by Northwestern Medicine scientists helps explain how bipolar disorder affects the brain and could one day lead to new drug therapies to treat the mental illness.

User comments