Establishing a regional pediatric trauma preventable/potentially preventable death rate

Stacy A. Drake, John B. Holcomb, Yijiong Yang, Caitlin Thetford, Lauren Myers, Morgan Brock, Dwayne Wolf, David Persse, Bindi J. Naik-Mathuria, Charles E. Wade, Matthew T. Harting

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


PURPOSE: Although trauma is the leading cause of death for the pediatric population, few studies have addressed the preventable/potentially preventable death rate (PPPDR) attributable to trauma.

METHODS: This is a retrospective study of trauma-related death records occurring in Harris County, Texas in 2014. Descriptive and Chi-squared tests were conducted for two groups, pediatric and adult trauma deaths in relation to demographic characteristics, mechanism of injury, death location and survival time.

RESULTS: There were 105 pediatric (age < 18 years) and 1738 adult patients. The PPPDR for the pediatric group was 21.0%, whereas the PPPDR for the adult group was 37.2% (p = 0.001). Analysis showed fewer preventable/potentially preventable (P/PP) deaths resulting from any blunt trauma mechanism in the pediatric population than in the adult population (19.6% vs. 48.4%, p < 0.001). Amongst the pediatric population, P/PP traumatic brain injury (TBI) were more common in the youngest age range (age 0-5) vs. the older (6-12 years) pediatric and adolescent (13-17 years) patients.

CONCLUSION: Our results identify areas of opportunities for improving pediatric trauma care. Although the overall P/PP death rate is lower in the pediatric population than the adult, opportunities for improving initial acute care, particularly TBI, exist.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)179-189
Number of pages11
JournalPediatric Surgery International
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2020


  • Injury
  • Mortality data
  • Pediatric trauma
  • Pediatric trauma death
  • Trauma systems
  • Humans
  • Child, Preschool
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Wounds and Injuries/mortality
  • Cause of Death/trends
  • Texas/epidemiology
  • Survival Rate/trends
  • Trauma Centers/statistics & numerical data
  • Adolescent
  • Female
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Child
  • Infant, Newborn

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Surgery


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