An epidemiological study of traumatic brain injury cases in a trauma centre of New Delhi (India)

Background: Trauma is one of the leading causes of death and disability in Indian population. Aim: To correlate various variables like epidemiology, clinical status, severity of TBI & associated co-morbid conditions and its outcome.
Settings and Design: This study involved retrospective collection, prospective management and follow up of 796 cases of TBI admitted to the neurosurgery department of a tertiary care hospital in New Delhi during one year study duration.
Materials and Methods: All the relevant variables recorded and analyzed with Glasgow Outcome Scale (GOS) in 6 months into 3 groups i.e. group 1 (GOS-1/Dead), group 2 (GOS-2&3/Bad) and group 3- (GOS-3&4/good). Statistical Analysis: Compiled data collected, analyzed and difference between two proportions was analyzed using Chi Square test.
Results: This study included 791 cases with 569 (72%) males and 222 (28%) females with average age of 24 years. Fall from height was the main cause of TBI (56%) followed by road traffic injury (RTI) (36%). Majority (61%) patients reached the hospital within 6 hours of injury out of which 27% patients were unconscious. As per Glasgow coma scale mild, moderate & severe grade of TBI was seen in 62%, 22% &16% cases respectively. Radiological examination of other body parts revealed injuries in 11% cases. Only 11% cases required surgical management, rest was managed conservatively. Good outcome noted in 80% cases and 20% cases expired. Average duration of hospital stay was 5 days. According to multivariate analysis, the factors which correlated with poor prognosis are presence of radiological injuries to other body parts, GCS, abnormal cranial nerve examination, abnormal plantar and abnormal pupillary reflex. (P < 0.05)
Conclusion: TBI predominantly affects young male population and most of these are preventable. Early transportation to the hospital and first aid results in good outcome. Mortality increases with the severity of TBI and associated injuries therefore multimodality approach in polytrauma is essential.

Prevalence of a definitive airway in patients with severe traumatic brain injury received at four urban public university hospitals in India: a cohort study

AIM:
To estimate the proportion of patients arriving with a Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) less than 9 who had a definitive airway placed prior to arrival.

METHODS:
We conducted a retrospective analysis of the data from a multicentre, prospective observational research project entitled Towards Improved Trauma Care Outcomes in India. Adults aged ≥18 years with an isolated traumatic brain injury (TBI) who were transferred from another hospital to the emergency department of the participating hospital with a GCS less than 9 were included. Our outcome was a definitive airway, defined as either intubation or surgical airway, placed prior to arrival at a participating centre.

RESULTS:
The total number of patients eligible for this study was 1499. The median age was 40 years and 84% were male. Road traffic injuries and falls comprised 88% of the causes of isolated TBI. The number of patients with GCS<9 who had a definitive airway placed before reaching the participating centres was 229. Thus, the proportion was 0.15 (95% CI 0.13 to 0.17). The proportions of patients with a definitive airway who arrived after 24 hours (19%) were approximately double the proportion of patients who arrived within 6 hours (10%) after injury to the definitive care centre.

CONCLUSION:
The rates of definitive airway placement are poor in adults with an isolated TBI who have been transferred from another health facility to tertiary care centres in India.

Linking household and health facility surveys to assess obstetric service availability, readiness and coverage: evidence from 17 low- and middle-income countries.

Improving access and quality of obstetric service has the potential to avert preventable maternal, neonatal and stillborn deaths, yet little is known about the quality of care received. This study sought to assess obstetric service availability, readiness and coverage within and between 17 low- and middle-income countries.We linked health facility data from the Service Provision Assessments and Service Availability and Readiness Assessments, with corresponding household survey data obtained from the Demographic and Health Surveys and Multiple Indicator Cluster Surveys. Based on performance of obstetric signal functions, we defined four levels of facility emergency obstetric care (EmOC) functionality: comprehensive (CEmOC), basic (BEmOC), BEmOC-2, and low/substandard. Facility readiness was evaluated based on the direct observation of 23 essential items; facilities “ready to provide obstetric services” had ?20 of 23 items available. Across countries, we used medians to characterize service availability and readiness, overall and by urban-rural location; analyses also adjusted for care-seeking patterns to estimate population-level coverage of obstetric services.Of the 111?500 health facilities surveyed, 7545 offered obstetric services and were included in the analysis. The median percentages of facilities offering EmOC and “ready to provide obstetric services” were 19% and 10%, respectively. There were considerable urban-rural differences, with absolute differences of 19% and 29% in the availability of facilities offering EmOC and “ready to provide obstetric services”, respectively. Adjusting for care-seeking patterns, results from the linking approach indicated that among women delivering in a facility, a median of 40% delivered in facilities offering EmOC, and 28% delivered in facilities “ready to provide obstetric services”. Relatively higher coverage of facility deliveries (?65%) and coverage of deliveries in facilities “ready to provide obstetric services” (?30% of facility deliveries) were only found in three countries.The low levels of availability, readiness and coverage of obstetric services documented represent substantial missed opportunities within health systems. Global and national efforts need to prioritize upgrading EmOC functionality and improving readiness to deliver obstetric service, particularly in rural areas. The approach of linking health facility and household surveys described here could facilitate the tracking of progress towards quality obstetric care.

Disparate outcomes of global emergency surgery – A matched comparison of patients in developed and under-developed healthcare settings.

Access to surgical care is an essential element of health-systems strengthening. This study aims to compare two diverse healthcare settings in South Asia and the United States (US).Patients at the Aga Khan University Hospital (AKUH), Pakistan were matched to patients captured in the US Nationwide Inpatient Sample (US-NIS) from 2009 to 2011. Risk-adjusted differences in mortality, major morbidity, and LOS were compared using logistic and generalized-linear (family gamma, link log) models after coarsened-exact matching.A total of 2,244,486 patients (n?=?4867 AKUH; n?=?2,239,619 US-NIS) were included. Of those in the US-NIS, 990,963 (42.5%) were treated at urban-teaching hospitals, 332,568 (14.3%) in rural locations. Risk-adjusted odds of reported mortality were higher for Pakistani patients (OR[95%CI]: 3.80[2.68-5.37]), while odds of reported complications were lower (OR[95%CI]: 0.56[0.48-0.65]). No differences were observed in LOS. The difference in outcomes was less pronounced when comparing Pakistani patients to American rural patients.These results demonstrate significant reported morbidity, mortality differences between healthcare systems. Comparative assessments such as this will inform global health policy development and support.

Epilepsy in Asia: Disease burden, management barriers, and challenges.

This article reviews the burden of epilepsy in Asia, the challenges faced by people with epilepsy, and the management of epilepsy. Comparison is made with other parts of the world. For this narrative review, data were collected using specified search criteria. Articles investigating the epidemiology of epilepsy, diagnosis, comorbidities and associated mortality, stigmatization, and treatment were included. Epilepsy is a global health care issue affecting up to 70 million people worldwide. Nearly 80% of people with epilepsy live in low- and middle-income countries with limited resources. People with epilepsy are prone to physical and psychological comorbidities, including anxiety and depression, which can negatively impact their quality of life. Furthermore, people with epilepsy are at higher risk of premature death than people without epilepsy. Discrimination or stigmatization of people with epilepsy is common in Asia and can affect their education, work, and marriage opportunities. Access to epilepsy treatment varies throughout Asia. Although highly advanced treatment is available in some countries, up to 90% of people with epilepsy are not adequately treated or are not treated with conventional antiepileptic therapy in resource-limited countries. People in remote areas often do not receive any epilepsy care. First-generation antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) are available, but usually only in urban areas, and second-generation AEDs are not available in all countries. Newer AEDs tend to have more favorable safety profiles than first-generation AEDs and provide options to tailor therapy for individual patients, especially those with comorbidities. Active epilepsy surgery centers are present in some countries, although epilepsy surgery is often underutilized given the number of patients who could benefit. Further epidemiologic research is needed to provide accurate epilepsy data across the Asian region. Coordinated action is warranted to improve access to treatment and care.

Cost Incurred by the Family for Surgery in Their Children: A Bangladesh Perspective.

Cost of getting health services is a major concern in Bangladesh as well as in many other countries. A family has to bear more than half of the health care cost despite many facilities provided by the public hospitals. This out-of-pocket (OOP) expenditure drives many families under the poverty line. The aim of this study was to find out the exact cost incurred by the family for a surgical operation of their child in the public and private sectors in Bangladesh.A cross-sectional study was conducted to find out the cost of child surgery in different settings of public and private hospitals in Chittagong division, Bangladesh. Cost of herniotomy was then compared across different settings.In this study, cost of operation in urban private hospitals was highest mostly due to surgeon and anesthetist fee. The cost was lowest in outreach programs as surgeon fee, anesthetist fee and accommodation cost was nil; food and transport cost was minimum. However, cost of accommodation, food, transport and medicine contributed significantly to OOP expenditure especially in tertiary-level public hospitals, in both indoor and day care settings, and also in private urban hospitals.Our study provides some insight into the OOP expenditure in different health care settings in Bangladesh. This study might be useful in developing a strategy to minimize the OOP expenditure in this country.

International Study of the Epidemiology of Paediatric Trauma: PAPSA Research Study.

Objectives
Trauma is a significant cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. The literature on paediatric trauma epidemiology in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) is limited. This study aims to gather epidemiological data on paediatric trauma.

Methods
This is a multicentre prospective cohort study of paediatric trauma admissions, over 1 month, from 15 paediatric surgery centres in 11 countries. Epidemiology, mechanism of injury, injuries sustained, management, morbidity and mortality data were recorded. Statistical analysis compared LMICs and high-income countries (HICs).

Results
There were 1377 paediatric trauma admissions over 31 days; 1295 admissions across ten LMIC centres and 84 admissions across five HIC centres. Median number of admissions per centre was 15 in HICs and 43 in LMICs. Mean age was 7 years, and 62% were boys. Common mechanisms included road traffic accidents (41%), falls (41%) and interpersonal violence (11%). Frequent injuries were lacerations, fractures, head injuries and burns. Intra-abdominal and intra-thoracic injuries accounted for 3 and 2% of injuries. The mechanisms and injuries sustained differed significantly between HICs and LMICs. Median length of stay was 1 day and 19% required an operative intervention; this did not differ significantly between HICs and LMICs. No mortality and morbidity was reported from HICs. In LMICs, in-hospital morbidity was 4.0% and mortality was 0.8%.

Conclusion
The spectrum of paediatric trauma varies significantly, with different injury mechanisms and patterns in LMICs. Healthcare structure, access to paediatric surgery and trauma prevention strategies may account for these differences. Trauma registries are needed in LMICs for future research and to inform local policy.

Slipped capital femoral epiphysis in Ramathibodi Hospital.

Slipped capital femoral epiphysis is rare in Asiatic Indonesian-Malays. Seven cases (9 hips) of this condition in Ramathibodi Hospital including five boys (average age, 12.5 years) and two girls (average age, 13 years) were reviewed. Most of the cases (4 out of 7) were acute on chronic and mild slips. No endocrine disorder was observed in all cases. All of the patients had a body weight above the mean of the normal population, four of which were obese. For the treatment, a single screw fixation including one case with cancellous and six cases with cannulated type were used. In the follow-up of average 2.5 years, six cases had satisfactory results. Avascular necrosis occurred in one case with mild and chronic slips in which a cancellous screw was used. It is concluded that obesity is the important factor related to the etiology in this study and probably is the same in other developing countries. The effect of a cancellous screw causing avascular necrosis is still questionable.

Improvised external fixator device to restore motion in a neglected elbow dislocation.

Neglected posterior dislocation of the elbow is a common problem in developing countries. One acceptable form of treatment is open reduction and transarticular Steinmann pin fixation. However, this leads to a stable but stiff elbow. We used an improvised external fixator after open reduction in two cases, which allowed for early mobilisation with adequate stability. This option can be considered when modern implants are not available.

Musculoskeletal trauma services in Mozambique and Sri Lanka.

There is currently an escalating epidemic of trauma-related injuries due to road traffic accidents and armed conflicts. This trauma occurs predominantly in rural areas where most of the population lives. Major ways to combat this epidemic include prevention programs, improved healthcare facilities, and training of competent providers. Mozambique and Sri Lanka have many common features including size, economic system, and healthcare structure but have significant differences in their medical education systems. With six medical schools, Sri Lanka graduates 1000 new physicians per year while Mozambique graduates less than 50 from their singular school. To supplement the low number of physicians, a training course for surgical technicians has been implemented. Examination of district hospital staffing and the medical education in these two countries might provide for improving trauma care competence in other developing countries. Musculoskeletal education is underrepresented in most medical school curricula around the world. District hospitals in developing countries are commonly staffed by recently graduated general medical officers, whose last formal education was in medical school. There is an opportunity to improve the quality of trauma care at the district hospital level by addressing the musculoskeletal curriculum content in medical schools.