Journal of Emergencies, Trauma, and Shock
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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 13  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 142-145

Fall related injuries in elderly patients in a tertiary care centre in Beirut, LebanonFall-related Injuries in Elderly Patients: A descriptive study from the emergency department of a tertiary care center in Beirut, Lebanon

1 Department of Emergency Medicine, American University of Beirut Medical Center, Beirut, Lebanon
2 Department of Emergency Medicine; Emergency Medical Services and Pre-Hospital Care Program, American University of Beirut Medical Center, Beirut, Lebanon

Correspondence Address:
Mazen J El Sayed
American University of Beirut Medical Center, PO Box: 11-0236 Riad El Solh, Beirut 1107 2020
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/JETS.JETS_84_19

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Context: Falls cause significant morbidity and mortality, constituting 38.9% of trauma visits to the emergency department (ED) in Lebanon. Elderly have increased risk of falls due to co-morbidities. Injury-related deaths are most common in developing countries, and few studies have examined falls internationally. Aims: Describe characteristics, injury patterns, and outcomes of elderly treated for fall injuries at a tertiary care center in Lebanon. Settings and Design: Retrospective observational chart review of elderly presenting after a fall to the ED. Subjects and Methods: Retrospective observational study of elderly (≥65 years) patients who presented to the ED at a tertiary care center in Lebanon with the chief complaint of “fall” over a 6-year period. Statistical Analysis Used: Descriptive analysis. Results: Two hundred and thirty-five patients were included; mean age was 78.1 (±7.2) years with female predominance (60.5%). Falls occurred at home (99.2%) and from ground level (96.4%). Patients presented by private transport (85.8%). The initial impact was to the head in 31.2% of patients with 47.8% on antiplatelet/anticoagulation therapy. Imaging includes extremity X-ray (46.6%) and head/cervical spine computed tomography (39.5%). Dispositions included home (58.9%), regular floor (23.3%), operating room (7.9%), and intensive care unit (5.9%). Pelvic/hip repair was the most common surgical procedure. Most injuries were nonlife-threatening. Overall mortality was 2%. Conclusions: Falls have a high impact on the elderly population in Lebanon, with most occurring at home, resulting in pelvic/hip injuries and a mortality of 2%. There is a need to implement multifaceted fall prevention programs to mitigate such injuries and improve patient safety and outcomes.

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