Putzke JD, Richards JS, Devivo MJ: Gunshot versus nongunshot spinal cord injury: acute care and rehabilitation outcomes. Am J Phys Med Rehabil 2001; 80:366–370.
Objective: To examine the impact of gunshot-caused spinal cord injury on acute and rehabilitative care outcome using a case control design.
Design: Two groups (i.e., gunshot-vs. nongunshot-caused spinal cord injury) of 212 individuals were matched case-for-case on age (i.e., within 10 yr), education, gender, race, marital status, primary occupation, impairment level, and Model System region. Outcome measures included length of hospital stay, functional status (FIM™), treatment charges, and home discharge rates.
Results: The two groups did not differ in the length of stay during acute and rehabilitative care, charges during rehabilitative care, or postrehabilitation discharge placement. Several significant between-group differences in treatment procedures were noted (e.g., prevalence of spinal surgery), which may, in part, account for the higher acute-care charges among those persons with nongunshot-caused spinal cord injury.
Conclusion: Once an individual is stabilized and admitted for rehabilitative care, gunshot etiology of spinal cord injury seems largely unrelated to the initial rehabilitation outcome.