Associations between Fall Distance, Age, and Trauma Outcomes in Older Adult Patients

Authors

  • Gina M. Berg, Ph.D., MBA University of Kansas School of Medicine-Wichita, Department of Family and Community Medicine, Wichita, KS; Wesley Medical Center, Trauma Services, Wichita, KS
  • Ashley M. Hervey, M.Ed. University of Kansas School of Medicine-Wichita, Department of Family and Community Medicine, Wichita, KS
  • Felecia A. Lee, Ph.D. University of Kansas School of Medicine-Wichita, Department of Family and Community Medicine, Wichita, KS
  • Sarah Holmes, PA-C Wichita State University, Department of Physician Assistant, Wichita, KS
  • Kayla R. Keuter, PA-C, MPH, M.A. Wichita State University, Department of Physician Assistant, Wichita, KS
  • Paul B. Harrison, M.D. Wesley Medical Center, Trauma Services, Wichita, KS

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.17161/kjm.v9i3.8612

Keywords:

falls, aged, mortality, referral and consultation

Abstract

Introduction. Falls are the leading cause of injury death among
older adults. This study sought to determine if there are differences
between fall distance (ground level vs greater than ground
level) and age (old vs very old) in terms of in-hospital mortality,
orthopedic consultations, and neurological consultations.


Methods. A retrospective trauma registry review was conducted
of older adult patients (aged > 65 years), admitted to a
Midwestern Level I trauma facility (2005 - 2010) due to a fall.
Results. Of the 1,064 patients analyzed, the majority fell from
ground level compared to greater than ground level (64% and
36%, respectively). Median age was 80 years. Fall distance was
not associated significantly with in-hospital mortality (OR
0.88; CI 0.50 - 1.54) or neurological consultations (OR 1.02; CI
0.72 - 1.43), but was associated with orthopedic consultations
(OR 1.49; CI 1.09 - 2.04). Age was not associated with in-hospital
mortality or neurological or orthopedic consultations.


Conclusions. Fall distance was not associated with in-hospital
mortality or receiving a neurological consultation.
However, older adults who fell from greater than ground
level were more likely to receive orthopedic consultations.
There were no differences in in-hospital mortality or receiving
a neurological or orthopedic consultation based on
age. These findings indicated that as the older adult population
increases, burden of care will increase for trauma centers
and neurological services. KS J Med 2016;9(3):54-57.

Downloads

Published

2019-01-08

How to Cite

Berg, G. M., Hervey, A. M., Lee, F. A., Holmes, S., Keuter, K. R., & Harrison, P. B. (2019). Associations between Fall Distance, Age, and Trauma Outcomes in Older Adult Patients. Kansas Journal of Medicine, 9(3), 54–57. https://doi.org/10.17161/kjm.v9i3.8612

Issue

Section

Original Research