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Acta Medica Colombiana

versión impresa ISSN 0120-2448


CARVAJAL, Carlos et al. Clinical and demographic characteristics of patients with spinal cord injury Six years experience. Acta Med Colomb [online]. 2015, vol.40, n.1, pp.45-50. ISSN 0120-2448.

Introduction: spinal cord injury (SCI) is a potentially catastrophic entity and information about the characteristics of pervasive SCI related to violence, particularly gunshot wounds, is scarce. Study Design: Retrospective cohort study. Objectives: to determine the clinical and demographic characteristics of the population with SCI attended in a tertiary hospital in Medellin. Methods: The medical records of patients admitted with a diagnosis of SCI between January 2005 and December 2010 were reviewed. Data regarding stay in the hospital and intensive care unit (ICU), vital status and neurological recovery at hospital discharge were collected. Results: there were 68 cases of SCI at a rate of 12 cases per 1000 patients admitted to the ICU. The average age was 28 years and 91% were male. The main cause of SCI was gunshot wounds (57%) followed by traffic accidents (32%). The mean ICU stay was six days, 56% of patients required mechanical ventilation and 37% required tracheostomy. The most common level of spinal cord injury was cervical. Hospital mortality was 21%, all were mechanically ventilated and the higher the level of spinal cord injury, the greater was the mortality. Conclusions: our research shows that people mainly affected by the SCI in our environment are young and mortality, as well as stay, infectious complications and disability are directly related to the level of spinal cord injury. (Acta Med Colomb 2014; 40: 45-50).

Palabras clave : epidemiology; mortality; spinal cord trauma; acute trauma; gunshot wounds.

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