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Revista chilena de cirugía

versión On-line ISSN 0718-4026


MEDINA U, ERNESTO  y  KAEMPFFER R, ANA M. An epidemiological review of accidents and violence in Chile. Rev Chil Cir [online]. 2007, vol.59, n.3, pp.175-184. ISSN 0718-4026.

Background: Accidents and violence are an important cause of medical care and represent 10% of all admissions to Chilean hospitals. Aim: To review the epidemiological information about accidents and violence in Chile. Material and Methods: The epidemiological information available at the World Health Organization, the Chilean National Institute of Statistics and the Chilean Ministry of Health, was analyzed. Results: Accidents and violence are the fourth cause of death in Chile (8.9% out of total deaths and 13,1% in men). In the 10-49 years age group the figure is 39%. Accidents are more common (63% out of total violence) than suicides (22%) and homicides (11%). During the period 1970-2003, mortality rates caused by accidents and violence had a downward trend from 79 to 47 per 100000. Chilean southern regions, men, the elderly and the period between the September and February, exhibit the highest rates. Medical care for trauma is mainly given in the National Health Service System and in emergency rooms of general hospitals. The frequency of accidents is associated with urban areas, standard of living and alcohol consumption. The most common type of violence are motor vehicle accidents in crushes or trampling. Three percent of all vehicles in Chile, are involved in such events every year. Special risk is noticed for buses, taxi cars and motorcycles. Ten percent of injured persons die or suffer an important lesion. During the periods 1970-2003, an increasing trend is observed for motor vehicle accidents, suicides and homicides. Conclusions: Accidents and violence are an important health burden in Chile

Palabras clave : Accidents; violence; car accidents; trauma.

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