Epidemiology of traumatic orthopaedic injuries at Princess Marina Hospital, Botswana
Background: Traumatic injuries pose a significant and increasing challenge to healthcare systems worldwide. One major type of traumatic injury is the traumatic orthopaedic injury, whose epidemiology is unknown in Botswana. The aim of the study, therefore, was to evaluate the age, sex, type, and determinants of traumatic orthopaedic injuries for inpatients at Princess Marina Hospital from August 2014 to January 2015.
Methods: We performed a descriptive study by retrospectively collecting data on age, sex, date of admission, date of injury, date of discharge, radiological investigation, and injury types and determinants from medical records of patients admitted to orthopaedic wards.
Results: The median age of patients with traumatic orthopaedic injuries was 33.5 years (n=372). Males were more frequently injured than females, with a sex ratio of 7:3. Fractures were the most common type of traumatic orthopaedic injury (413 injuries, 75.5%). The most common injury determinants were falls (145 patients/39.0%), road traffic accidents (95 patients/25.5%), and assaults (57 patients/15.3%).
Conclusions: Young adult males were the group most affected by traumatic orthopaedic injuries. Fractures were the most common type of traumatic orthopaedic injuries, with falls being the most common injury determinant. These findings may guide efforts to improve healthcare delivery and public health policy.
Level of evidence: Level 4