CHILD INJURY ADMISIONS TO A HOSPITAL IN ETHIOPIA
Background: Childhood is a period characterized by increased physical activity. This, coupled with wrong judgment of dangerous and risky situations, leads to increased chances of injury, if daily activities and play are not supervised by care givers.
Objective: This study sets out to evaluate the burden of childhood injury and spotlight the common conditions that predispose to it with view to proffering some solutions.
Methods and Materials: A retrospective analysis was carried out in all children with injury admitted from 1 September 2010 to 30 August 2015 in Mekelle Hospital.
Results: In this series, there were 508 childhood injuries and the age distribution was 135(26.6%) between 0-4years, 196(38.6%) between 5-9 years and 177(34.8%) between 10-14 years. Most, 196 (38.6.0%) childhood injuries occurred in ages between 5- 9 years followed by10-14 years of life accounting for 177(34.8%) of the cases. Boys 348(68.5%)were more predominantly affected than girls 160(31.5%). The causes of injury were fall down accident (30.1%), road traffic accident (24.8%), burn injuries(23.8%), puncture wounds (11.2%) and non-fatal interpersonal violence (8.7%). Fall down and road traffic accidents were the top causes of injury in ages between 5–9 and 10-14 years. Among the injury types, fractures accounted for 30.7%. The overall mortality rate was 4.9%, most of which was due to road traffic crashes and burn injuries.
Conclusion: In this study, the rate of pediatric injury appeared to be low in early childhood, while it showed a significant increase in school ages for all kinds of injury. The evidence indicated that most childhood injuries are preventable and that effective preventive measures can significantly reduce injury related childhood morbidity and mortality.
Key wards: Children, Injury type, Outcomes.
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