Background Traumatic brain injury (TBI) still remains the most common cause of morbidity and mortality in children all over the world. The purpose of this study is to specify the demographic and epidemiologic characteristics of all TBI cases treated in the PICU of Hippokratio General Hospital of Thessaloniki, over a 12-year period.
Methods A retrospective chart review was conducted of all patients admitted to PICU from 1999 to 2012 with TBI. Age, sex, mechanism and severity of injury, Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS), Paediatric Risk Index of Mortality (PRISM) and outcome were recorded.
Results TBI cases accounted for 14,5% of total admissions (252 patients). The mean age was 6,9 ± 3,6 with a predominance of boys 69,4%. The most common cause of injury was falls (34,9%), followed by car accidents (33,7%) and pedestrian road accidents (19,8%). A total of 71% were classified as severe TBI (GCS <8). Mean PRISM score was 10,6 ± 7,9. The rate of operative intervention was 33%. Good recovery was observed in 68,7%, poor recovery in 20,6% while death in 10,7%.
Conclusion TBI consists a common cause of admission in PICU and despite the advances in medical and surgical care remains the leading cause of death and disability for children in all age groups expect from infants < 1 year of age. The majority of TBI, in our series, were severe in nature and almost one third of them resulted in severe disability or death.