Disparities in survival after traumatic injury among minority and uninsured patients has been well described for younger patients. But information is lacking on the effect of race on trauma outcomes for older patients.
The authors examined in-hospital mortality after trauma for black and white patients between the ages of 16 and 64 years and 65 years and older. The study included more than 1 million patients (502,167 patients were age 16 to 64 years and 571,028 patients were 65 years and older).
Younger white patients had better trauma outcomes than younger black patients, but older black patients fared better than similarly injured older white patients. The authors point out that similar paradoxical findings have been seen among nontrauma patients.
“Exploration of this paradoxical finding may lead to a better understanding of the mechanisms that cause disparities in trauma outcomes.”
The research was published in JAMA Surgery.
JAMA Surgery. Published online May 28, 2014. doi:10.1001/jamasurg.2014.166.
An author made conflict of interest disclosures. This study was supported by a grant from the National Institutes of Health and a fellowship from the American College of Surgeons. Please see the article for additional information, including other authors, author contributions and affiliations, financial disclosures, funding and support, etc.