Case series of hyena bite injuries and their surgical management in a resource-limited setup: 1-year experience

Animal bites are a significant cause of morbidity and mortality and pose a major public health problem worldwide. Children are reportedly the most common victims of animal bites. Bites may be limited to superficial tissues or lead to extensive disfiguring injuries, fractures, infections and rarely result in death. Recently, human injuries caused by non-domesticated animals are increasingly common as ecosystems change and humans encroach on previously wild land. Wild animals like hyenas have been reported to prey on humans and cattle in parts of Africa. Discussed here are four children out of 11 patients that presented with hyena bites-the children had severe bites to the face and head with extensive soft tissue loss, fractures and concomitant severe infections that led to high mortality, indicating the necessity for advanced intensive care and multidisciplinary treatment needed in such situations.

The Occurrence and Contributing Factors of Needle Stick and Sharp Injuries Among Dental Students in a South African University

Needle stick and sharp injuries are a global public health issue, mainly due to exposure to infectious diseases. Dental students, in particular, are at a high risk of needle stick and sharp injuries attributed to the restricted working space of the oral cavity and the routine use of sharp instruments, among other risks. Despite this growing body of knowledge on needle stick and sharp injuries in the dental setting, data is limited among dental students in South Africa.

The study aimed to determine the occurrence and contributing factors of needle stick and sharp injuries among dental undergraduate students in a university in South Africa.

A university based cross-sectional study was conducted among 248 dental students in the School of Oral Health Sciences using a census sampling. An anonymous self-administered questionnaire was used to collect data on prevalence, procedures, instruments, reporting, contributing factors, training, protective strategies, and hepatitis B immunization. Data was analysed using STATA 14.

The response rate was 99% and the mean age of students was 24 years (SD=±4). Male students were 43% (107), while females constituted 57% (141) of the sample. One-hundred and one (41%) students reported being exposed to needle stick and sharps injuries. Most injuries (45%) occurred among students studying Bachelor of Dental and Surgery and among students in the 4th year (57%). The people at the departments of periodontology (39%), and maxillofacial and oral Surgery (25%) experienced most injuries. The main tools causing injuries were the syringe needle (52%) and the scaler (31%) while injecting a patient (34%), and scaling and polishing (26%) were common procedures. Eight (8%) students did not report their injury, even though the use of prophylaxis exposure was minimal (8%). Very few students (5%) were tested for a blood-borne virus after injury, while 23% did nothing with their injury and 43% opted to wash the injury under tap water. Lack of concentration (36%) and anxiety (19%) were reported as major contributing factors to injuries. Two hundred and forty six (99%) students were fully vaccinated against hepatitis B. Two hundred and nineteen (86%) students were aware of full details on the use of universal precautions. One hundred and eighty six (75%) students practiced needle recapping. Being in the 3rd year (AOR = 3.0, 95%CI: 1.4 – 6.3), 4th year (AOR = 5.0, 95%CI: 1.9 – 11) and 5th year (AOR=4.6, 95%CI: 2 -12.5) was significantly associated to injuries compared to students in the 2nd year of the study.

The needle stick and sharp injuries were prevalent in this study, and factors implicated were lack of concentration and anxiety, as well as, age, academic year of study and training on handling of instruments. The burden of needle stick and sharps injuries among the dental professionals can be reduced by adhering to the current and universally accepted standard precautionary measures against needle stick and sharp injuries.

Trauma burden, patient demographics and care-process in major hospitals in Tanzania: A needs assessment for improving healthcare resource management

Appropriate referrals of injured patients could improve clinical outcomes and management of healthcare resources. To gain insights for system development, we interrogated the current situation by assessing burden, patient demography, causes of injury, trauma mortality and the care-process.

We used an observational, cross-sectional study design and convenience sampling to review patient charts from 3 major hospitals and the death registry in Tanzania.

Injury constitutes 9–13% of the Emergency Centre census. Inpatient trauma-deaths were 8%; however, the trauma death registry figures exceeded the ‘inpatient deaths’ and recorded up to 16%. Most patients arrive through a hospital referral system (82%) and use a hospital transport network (76%). Only 8% of the trauma admissions possessed National Health Insurance. Road traffic collision (RTC) (69%), assault (20%) and falls (9%) were the leading causes of injury. The care process revealed a normal primary-survey rate of 73–90%. Deficiencies in recording were in the assessment of: Airway and breathing (67%), circulation (40%) and disability (80%). Most patients had non-operative management (42–57%) or surgery for wound care or skeletal injuries (43%). Laparotomies were performed in 26%, while craniotomy and chest drain-insertion were each performed in 10%.

The burden of trauma is high, and the leading causes are: RTC, assault, and falls. Deaths recorded in the death registries outweigh in-hospital deaths for up to twofold. There are challenges in the care process, funding and recording. We found a functional hospital referral-network, transport system, and death registry.

Impact of time of arrival in emergency unit on estimation of injuries and overall care of trauma victims

Background: Outcomes of trauma victims largely depends upon available resources, not only in terms of location of high level trauma center near the area where incident takes place but also on staff and equipment available at that particular center at that particular time. This study used retrospective charts review to ascertain whether trauma patients presenting during the night time would have delayed in establishing injuries after necessary investigations and higher in-hospital mortality than those trauma patients arriving during the day time at our hospital.

Methods: This was a cross sectional study, conducted in department of Surgery, Aga Khan University Hospital, Karachi. Data was obtained from patients charts by a single investigator. By random sampling technique, 146 patients admitted between 1st January 2018 to 31st December 2018inthe Emergency Department of the Aga Khan University Hospital, Karachi were included. Patients were placed into two groups. Those arriving in hospital from 7 am to 7 pm were labeled as day time group while those who presented from 7 pm to 7 am were labeled as night time group. Difference in mortality in each group and time required for carrying out investigations and admissions to definite care were recorded and compared among both groups.

Results: A total of 146 patient charts were reviewed, with 73 patients each in both day time (DT) and night time (NT) groups. Out of 146 trauma victims 123(82.2%) were male and 23(17.8%) were female. Mean age in our population was 37.4 years (±14.3). Road traffic accident (RTA) was the most common cause in 121 patients (82.9%). Time required to conduct trauma services was shorter and significant in DT group as compared to NT group. There was significant difference observed in time required for admission in each group, with mean of 6hours and 40 minutes ± 4 hours,22 minutes in DT group and 8 hours, 36 minutes (± 5 hours,11 minutes in NT group (p = 0.03). However there was no significant difference in mortality observed in both groups.

Conclusions: In our hospital time of arrival has no impact on overall mortality of trauma patients. However time to carryout necessary investigations for stable trauma patients and their admissions to definite care is longer as compared to day time arrival of emergency trauma patients.