Short‐term outcomes in children following emergency department visits for minor injuries sustained at home

Matthew J. Molloy, Wendy Shields, Molly W. Stevens, Andrea C. Gielen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Minor injuries are very common in the pediatric population and often occur in the home environment. Despite its prevalence, little is known about outcomes in children following minor injury at home. Understanding the impact of these injuries on children and their families is important for treatment, prevention, and policy. The objectives of our study were (1) To describe the distribution of short-term outcomes following pediatric minor injuries sustained at home and (2) To explore the relationship of injury type and patient and household demographics with these outcomes. Methods: Children (n = 102) aged 0–7 years with a minor injury sustained at home were recruited in an urban pediatric emergency department as part of the Child Housing Assessment for a Safer Environment (CHASE) observational study. Each patient had a home visit following the emergency department visit, where five parent-reported outcomes were assessed. Relationships were explored with logistic regression. Results: The most common type of injury was soft tissue (57.8 %). 13.2 % of children experienced ≥ 7 days of pain, 21.6 % experienced ≥ 7 days of abnormal activity, 8.9 % missed ≥ 5 days of school, 17.8 % of families experienced ≥ 7 days of disruption, and 9.1 % of parents missed ≥ 5 days of work. Families reported a total of 120 missed school days and 120 missed work days. Children who sustained a burn had higher odds of experiencing pain (OR 6.97), abnormal activity (OR 8.01), and missing school (OR 8.71). The parents of children who sustained a burn had higher odds of missing work (OR 14.97). Conclusions: Families of children suffering a minor injury at home reported prolonged pain and changes in activity as well as significant school and work loss. In this cohort, burns were more likely than other minor injuries to have these negative short-term outcomes reported and represent an important target for interventions. The impact of these injuries on missed school and disruption of parental work warrants further consideration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number16
JournalInjury Epidemiology
Volume8
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2021

Keywords

  • Injury outcomes
  • Minor injury
  • Pediatric burn
  • Pediatric emergency medicine
  • Pediatric injury
  • Substandard housing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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