Factors Associated With In-Hospital Outcomes of Traumatic Spinal Cord Injury: 10-year Analysis of the US National Inpatient Sample

Feng Gao, Hongyu Chu, Liang Chen, Liangjie Du, Mingliang Yang, Jun Li, Degang Yang, Hong Zhang, Jianjun Li (Corresponding Author), Chetwyn Chan

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review


INTRODUCTION: Traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI) is a life-altering event. Motor vehicle accidents and falls are common causes of traumatic SCI, and SCI outcomes may be affected by patients' ages and injury sites. This study aimed to investigate the factors associated with unfavorable in-hospital outcomes, focusing on the impact of patients' ages and SCI lesion sites. METHODS: Data of 25,988 patients hospitalized with traumatic SCI in the US National Inpatient Sample (NIS) database from 2005 to 2014 were extracted and analyzed. Univariate and multivariate logistic regression analyses were performed to determine the factors associated with SCI outcomes, including in-hospital deaths, adverse discharge, and prolonged hospital stays. RESULTS: Multivariate analysis revealed that the oldest ages (>65 years) were significantly associated with increased in-hospital mortality compared with the youngest ages at all lesion sites (cervical, odds ratio [OR]: 5.474, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 4.465 to 6.709; thoracic, OR: 5.940, 95% CI: 3.881 to 9.091; and lumbosacral, OR: 6.254, 95% CI: 2.920 to 13.394). Older ages were also significantly associated with increased adverse outcomes at all sites (cervical, OR: 2.460, 95% CI: 2.180 to 2.777; thoracic, OR: 2.347, 95% CI: 1.900 to 2.900; and lumbosacral, OR: 2.743, 95% CI: 2.133 to 3.527). Intermediate ages (35 to 64) were also significantly associated with increased in-hospital death and adverse discharge at cervical and thoracic SCIs, but not at lumbosacral sites. DISCUSSION: For hospitalized patients with traumatic SCI, older age independently predicts worse in-hospital outcomes, with greatest effects seen in patients aged 65 years and older. Study findings suggest that extra vigilance and targeted management strategies are warranted in managing SCI patients aged 65 years and older during hospitalization.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)707-716
Number of pages10
JournalThe Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
Issue number17
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

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