Epidemiology of domestic injuries. A survey in an emergency department in North-East Italy


Introduction. Home injuries (HI) represent a social and pub- lic health problem worldwide. In Italy, there are 1,300,000- 1,700,000 admissions to Emergency Department (ED) for HI and 130,000 hospitalizations every year, but the data are incomplete and fragmentary. A study of the phenomenon was carried out in Emergency Department (ED) of Civil Hospital of Verona to evaluate prevalence, characteristics and possible preventive actions. Methods. In 2007, 3120 admission for HI have been registered at the ED of the Civil Hospital of Verona. The distribution was calculated in relation to sex, age, month, code of urgency, out- comes, type and location of trauma. Results. Children in pre-school age, men between 30 and 40 years and women over 60 years are the population groups most at risk, with a fairly homogeneous incidence distribution. Both sexes have similar distributions up to 41-50 years followed by an increase in females and a decrease in males at higher age. The traumas are generally slight (49.8% white code and 42.1% green code) and the hospitalizations represent 5.7% of all recorded HI. The most frequent injuries are wounds/abrasions (28.7%), contusions/crushing (27.7%) and fractures/distortions/ dislocations. The most affected body parts are hands and wrists (25.9%). Head trauma is significantly more frequent in children and elderly people, fracture in elderly people, and burn in adult women and male children. Every year about 30% of the admissions to emergency depart- ments are caused by HI. Even though 92% of the times the events aren?t serious, the sanitary cost is consistent due to the elevate number of admissions. It is therefore important to do prevention through sanitary education and adequate building legislation.