Utilizing trauma admissions as an opportunity to identify developmental and behavioral concerns

Am J Surg. 2017 Oct;214(4):661-665. doi: 10.1016/j.amjsurg.2017.07.001. Epub 2017 Jul 8.


Background: Developmental and behavioral problems are often underdiagnosed in the pediatric population, and are risk factors for injury from trauma. Early intervention for these concerns yields improved outcomes. No prior research has screened for these difficulties during pediatric trauma admissions.

Methods: The current study utilized "The Survey of Wellbeing of Young Children" (SWYC) to assess for possible areas of concern by parent report. Concerns were compared to the presence of screening documented in their pediatrician's last well-child visit note.

Results: Of the 27 participants, 59.3% had developmental, behavioral, parental, or familial concerns. Overall, 46.2% of pediatricians had formally screened for concerns at the child's last well child visit, resulting in 25.9% being identified with new concerns found on the SWYC.

Conclusions: Pediatric trauma admissions provide an important opportunity to screen for behavioral and developmental concerns in a population that is at risk for these concerns and that could greatly benefit from having problems identified.

Keywords: Behavioral concerns; Developmental delays; Pediatric; Trauma.

MeSH terms

  • Boston
  • Child, Hospitalized*
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Mass Screening*
  • Neurodevelopmental Disorders / diagnosis*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Wounds and Injuries / therapy*