Analysis of head injury admission trends in an urban American pediatric trauma center

J Trauma. 2005 Dec;59(6):1292-7. doi: 10.1097/01.ta.0000197439.19171.25.


Background: Head injury is the leading cause of death in children. Child safety legislation and risk-specific intervention programs have flourished to mitigate the incidence of injury to children. This analysis documents the trend in head injury to children in a specific institution.

Methods: Analysis of 5,003 head injury admissions to a pediatric trauma center over thirteen years was performed. Admission rates were calculated using the appropriate population denominator from census data. Poisson regression analysis was applied to estimate the relative risk of head injury admission by year in different age, sex, mechanism of injury and severity group.

Results: There has been a 70% decline in the head injury admission rate since 1989, consistent with regional and national data. The decline was present in all mechanisms of injury and age groups except for less than 1 year of age. The decline in total trauma admissions over the same time period was 50% and the decline in total hospital admission was 10%.

Conclusion: Pediatric head injury has significantly declined in the last 13 years at a Level I pediatric trauma center.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Age Distribution
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Craniocerebral Trauma / epidemiology*
  • Craniocerebral Trauma / etiology
  • District of Columbia / epidemiology
  • Hospitals, Pediatric
  • Hospitals, Urban
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Infant
  • Patient Admission / trends*
  • Trauma Centers