Epidemiological Profile of traumatic spinal cord injuries in the National Referral Hospital, Bhutan
Keywords:Falls, Road traffic accident, Spinal cord injury
Introduction: The number of traumatic spinal cord injuries associated with a fracture is on rise which is compounded by rise in number of motor vehicle accidents in the country. The aim of the study was to assess frequency, cause, pattern, and demographic profile of traumatic spinal cord injuries in the Bhutanese population.
Methods: A retrospective study was conducted at National Referral Hospital from 2018 to 2020. Hospital records of patients, treated for traumatic spinal cord injury were reviewed.
Results: Of the total of 100 patients with traumatic spinal injury admitted during study period, there were 69 males (69%) and 31 females (31%). The mean age was 44.18 years (±16.625 SD). Falls (61%) was most common cause of spine injury followed by road traffic accident (27%). Lumbar spine injury was most common (42%) followed by cervical spine (31%) and thoracic spine (23%) injuries. Of 100 patients with spinal injury 63 patients did not have associated cord injuries while 37% of patients had associated spinal cord injuries and of those with spinal injuries, 20% of them had complete spinal cord injury (SCI) and 17% had incomplete SCI. Regarding treatment, 42% of spine injury patients underwent surgical procedures while 58% were managed conservatively. The mean length of hospital stay after spinal injury was 6.62 days (± 26.06 SD, range 1-215).
Conclusions: The study found that most common cause of spine and associated cord injuries were falls followed by road traffic accidents. By collaborating with traffic and road safety division, our study findings have potential to significantly reduce road traffic accidents and enhance preventive measures. Additionally, we can provide valuable education to families regarding rehabilitation and social support, ultimately leading to improved outcomes and better quality of life for individuals living with spinal cord injuries.
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Copyright (c) 2023 Kuenzang Wangdi, Ugyen Tshering, Karma Phuentsho
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