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Outcome and Quality of Life 5 Years After Major Trauma

Sluys, Kerstin RN, BS; Häggmark, Tom MD, PhD; Iselius, Lennart MD, PhD

Journal of Trauma-Injury Infection & Critical Care: July 2005 - Volume 59 - Issue 1 - pp 223-232
Article Titles

Background: This study aimed to determine quality of life after injury and identify factors potentially associated with outcome.

Methods: Five years after injury from blunt or penetrating trauma, patients received a questionnaire based on the SF-36 Health Survey.

Results: Two hundred five patients (83%) replied. Most were men, median age 39 years, 93% injured by blunt energy, median Injury Severity Score 14 (range 9–57). Mean SF-36 scores were significantly lower than in a matched reference group. Poor outcome was associated with: in-hospital days, intensive care days, surgical procedures, in-hospital major complications, age, recurrent injury, and inadequate information. Subjects reported considerable physical (68%) and psychologic (41%) disabilities. Near half reported need of improved follow-up care. Injury severity did not predict poor health-related quality of life 5 years later.

Conclusion: Adequate information, sufficient pain management and follow-up by trauma specialist teams are needed. Certain factors can help identify patients in need of additional help and support.

Doctoral Student, Department of Surgical Science, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden. Registered Intensive Care Specialist Nurse, Department of Surgery, Karolinska University Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden. Associate Professor, Department of Surgical Science, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden. Consultant Surgeon, Department of Surgery, Karolinska University Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden. Associate Professor, Department of Surgical Science, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden. Consultant Surgeon, Department of Surgery, Karolinska University Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden

Submitted for publication June 1, 2005.

Accepted for publication June 8, 2005.

Address for reprints: Kerstin Sluys, RN, Department of Surgery P9:03, Karolinska University Hospital, Solna, SE-171 76 Stockholm, Sweden; Email: kerstin.sluys@telia.com

© 2005 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.