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Epidemiology of traumatic spinal cord injury in Norway in 2012-2016: a registry-based cross-sectional study

Journal article
Authors A. Halvorsen
A. L. Pettersen
S. M. Nilsen
K. K. Halle
E. E. Schaanning
Tiina Rekand
Published in Spinal Cord
Volume 57
Issue 4
Pages 331-338
ISSN 1362-4393
Publication year 2019
Published at Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology
Pages 331-338
Language en
Keywords neurological classification, international standards, demographics, mortality
Subject categories Neurosciences


Study design A registry-based cross-sectional study. Objectives To analyse the epidemiological and demographic characteristics of persons with traumatic spinal cord injury (TSCI) in Norway. Setting TSCI patients admitted for primary rehabilitation to one of the three specialised spinal cord injury (SCI) departments (located in Bergen, Trondheim, and Oslo) and consented to the Norwegian Spinal Cord Injury Registry (NorSCIR). Methods Analysis of data from NorSCIR during a 5-year period (2012-2016) was performed. Data were collected by using the International SCI Core Data Set as recommended by the International Spinal Cord Society (ISCoS). Results The lowest incidence of TSCI was 11.4/million (2012), and the highest incidence was 15.9/million (2014). In the study period, 349 individuals were registered with TSCI. In total, 76% were male, and the mean age was 47 (SD +/- 19) years. We observed dominance in the 60-74 years age group. The distribution between tetraplegia and paraplegia was 48%/42%. For those initially classified as American Spinal Cord Injury Association Impairment Scale (AIS) grade A (complete injury), 77% remained grade A at discharge. Considerable changes during primary rehabilitation after incomplete lesions were observed. Most patients (68%) were discharged home after primary rehabilitation. Falls were the main cause of TSCI (47%) and occurred more often during the weekend. Conclusion Through a National Medical Quality Registry based on internationally provided data sets, we are able to present systematic and updated data from Norway.

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