Prevalence of traumatic injuries visiting the emergency department of a regional university teaching hospital in Nigeria

Abstract: Background: Traumatic injuries are important causes of death and disability among adults and children. Trauma is one of the most common causes of emergency department visits in most part of the world. Objectives: The objective of the study is to evaluate the prevalence of the traumatic injuries in the accident and emergency department of our institution, to establish the burden of traumatic injuries. Patients and Methods: The study spans over 2 years, January 2013–December 2014. Patient’s biodata, type of injuries sustained, etiology of injuries, and rate of patient transfer to the wards were extracted from the emergency department attendance and transfer registers and entered into a designed questionnaire. Statistical analysis was with SPSS version 20. Results: Of the 11,393 patients who visited the emergency department during the study, 2381 (20.90%) were traumatic injury patients. The mean age was 29.25 years ± 1.57 STD. Road traffic accidents (RTA) constituted 1200 (50.40%) of all traumatic cases, followed by assaults and falls which constituted 449 (18.86%) and 174 (11.17%) respectively. The part of the body mostly affected by injury was the head 478 (20.1%) patients. A total of 757 (31.8%) cases of traumatic injury were transferred to the hospital ward after being stabilized in the emergency department. Conclusion: This study had highlighted the burden which traumatic injuries and especially RTA imposed on the health facility and the need to provide adequate resources and increase the staff strength for smooth running of the emergency department.

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