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Research Article Open Access

Predictors of Injury Severity for Inpatient Falls in Taiwan: A Retrospective Study

Abstract

Background: Falls consist of one of the most frequently reported adverse hospital events. Little is known about the risk of severe injury for inpatients due to falls. The purpose of this study was to determine factors associated with fall injury severity.

Methods: We performed a retrospective study with subjects from a teaching hospital of central Taiwan and collected relevant data from the Adverse Event (AE) reporting system from 2008 to 2013.

Results: A total of 498 patients who had fallen during hospitalization were enrolled in the study. We identified risk factors for severe injuries by logistic multiple regression analysis, medical units (P=0.000, P<0.05), age (P=0.031, P<0.05), lacking a companion (P=0.023, P<0.05), and frequent falls (P=0.023, P<0.05) were significantly correlated with the severity of the falls. The severity of the fall 4-5 times and the severity of the fall more than 6 times are almost the same. Single and recurrent falls resulted in different degrees of injury with a significant correlation between the frequency of falls and the injury severity.

Conclusions: Severe injuries from falls are significantly correlated with ward units, number of falls, and the age. The severity of falls in psychiatric and rehabilitation ward patients was greater than that of patients in acute wards. The injury severity was also correlated with the number of falls. It may be possible to establish a fall prevention model that takes into account specific fall risk factors.

Ching-Mei Chang, Cheng-Fan Wen and Hsien-Feng Lin

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