Recurrent episodes of injury in children: an Australian cohort study
Authors: Cate M. Cameron, Anneliese B. Spinks, Jodie M. Osborne, Tamzyn M. Davey, Neil Sipe, Roderick J. McClure
Objective: The aim of the present study was to compare sociodemographic characteristics of children with single versus recurrent episodes of injury and provide contemporary evidence for Australian injury prevention policy development.
Methods: Participants were identified from the Environments for Healthy Living: Griffith Birth Cohort Study 2006–11 (n = 2692). Demographic data were linked to the child’s hospital emergency and admissions data from birth to December 2013. Data were dichotomised in two ways: (1) injured or non-injured; and (2) single or recurrent episodes of injury. Multivariate logistic regression was used for analysis.
Results: The adjusted model identified two factors significantly associated with recurrent episodes of injury in children aged <3 years. Children born to mothers <25 years were almost fourfold more likely to have recurrent episodes of injury compared with children of mothers aged 35 years (adjusted odds ratio (aOR) = 3.68; 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.44–9.39) and, as a child’s age at first injury increased, odds of experiencing recurrent episodes of injury decreased (aOR = 0.97; 95% CI 0.94–0.99). No differences were found in sociodemographic characteristics of children aged 3–7 years with single versus recurrent episodes of injury (P > 0.1).
Conclusion: National priorities should include targeted programs addressing the higher odds of recurrent episodes of injury experienced by children aged <3 years with younger mothers or those injured in the first 18 months of life.