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Keogh V, Lanuza D, Jennrich J, et al. Characteristics of the trauma recidivist: An exploratory descriptive study. J Emerg Nurs 2001; 27:340-346.
More than one-third of ED trauma patients were recidivists, says this study from Loyola University — Chicago School of Nursing. A sample of 100 trauma patients was studied with a demographic chart review and a personal interview. The study found that the trauma recidivist was likely to be male, younger than 45, a member of a racial minority, single, uninsured, and have less than 12 years of education.
"Knowing the profile of the recidivist can give nurses the information they need to educate patients, families, and communities of this high-risk group," argue the researchers. They recommend the following interventions to reduce risks of further injuries:
• making counseling available to friends and family members of victims of a violent injury;
• implementing mandatory drug and alcohol screening for all trauma patients;
• offering drug and alcohol evaluation and intervention programs to trauma victims;
• developing a profile to identify potential recidivists;
• informing patients that they are at high risk of becoming a trauma patient again if they do not change the behavior that caused the first injury;
• giving appropriate medical, social, and community referrals to high-risk patients.