Background — Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a primary cause of injury mortality in developed countries but less is known about the impact of TBI on postacute mortality in large study populations. This study investigates the rate and predictors of postacute mortality (1–9 years after the initial injury) of severely injured persons with TBI in the Province of Ontario from April 1, 1993 to March 31, 1995.
Method — Cases were identified (n = 2,721) from the Ontario Trauma Registry Comprehensive Data Set based on lead trauma hospitals in the province which also provided data on predictors. Severely injured patients (n = 557) who had lower extremity injuries during the sample time period formed a control population.
Results — Poisson regression modeling showed that having a TBI was a significant predictor of premature death controlling for age and injury severity. Age, the number of comorbidities, injury severity, mechanism of injury, and discharge destination were significant predictors in the multivariate analyses for the TBI population.
Conclusions — This research quantifies the elevated risk of premature death in the postacute period for seriously injured adults with TBI and identifies factors most associated with highest mortality rates in this population.