Ten years of trauma in the 'Top End' of the Northern Territory, Australia: A retrospective analysis

Christopher Gowing, Kathleen McDermott, Linda Ward, Bronte Martin

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Aim: To examine characteristics of traumatic injury in adults and children at the Royal Darwin Hospital (RDH) over a 10 year period.

A retrospective review of the RDH Trauma Registry data from 1 January 2003 to 31 December 2012, with analysis of patient demographics, mechanism of injury, Injury Severity Score (ISS), and outcome.

Two thousand seven hundred twenty-five patients with an ISS greater than or equal to 9 and met all other study inclusion criteria.

Motor vehicle crashes, assaults and falls consistently remained the three most common mechanisms of injury throughout the 10 year period. Indigenous admissions showed a significant downward trend (p = 0.009). Upward trends were noted in presentations from patients aged greater than 44 (p = 0.002), all-terrain vehicle accidents (p < 0.001), and hangings (p = 0.003). No other trends were noted to significant at a p < 0.05 level. Admitted Indigenous patients were significantly more likely to be present due to assault (p < 0.001) and female patients were more likely to present due to assault, falls and motor vehicle crashes (p < 0.01) than their counterparts.

Presentations for traumatic injury to Royal Darwin Hospital have remained in the most part, consistently stable for the period of 2003–2012. Though there were some increases/decreases in regard to specific demographics and mechanisms, few were found to be statistically significant at a p < 0.05 level.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)17-21
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Emergency Nursing
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2015


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