Research Reports - Higher mortality rates among the elderly with mild traumatic brain injury

Scand J Trauma Resusc Emerg Med. 2014 Jan 28;22(1)

Cheng PL, Lin HY, Lee YK, Hsu CY, Lee CC, Su YC

BACKGROUND: It is known that the risk of death in elderly patients with moderate
to severe traumatic brain injury is increased. However, the relationship between
mild traumatic brain injury and death has never been established. We investigated
the mortality rates of older patients with mild traumatic brain injury in Taiwan
to evaluate if there is a higher risk of death compared with the general
population.
METHODS: We utilized a sampled National Health Insurance claims database
containing one million beneficiaries. We followed all adult beneficiaries older
than 65 years from January 1, 2005 till December 31, 2009 to see if they died. We
further identified patients with mild traumatic brain injury and compared their
risk of death with the general population.
RESULTS: We identified 5997 patients with mild traumatic brain injury and 84,117
patients without mild traumatic brain injury. After controlling for age, gender,
urbanization level, socioeconomic status, diabetes, hypertension, history of
alcohol intoxication, history of ischemic stroke, history of intracranial
hemorrhage, malignancies, dementia and Charlson Comorbidity Index score, the
adjusted hazard ratio was 1.25 (95% confidence interval, 1.16-1.34).
CONCLUSIONS: Mild traumatic brain injury is an independent significant risk
factor for death in the elderly.

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