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Prevalence of Alcohol and Other Drug Use in Patients Presenting to Hospital for Violence-Related Injuries: A Systematic Review.

Authors
  • Lau, Georgina1
  • Ang, Jia Y1
  • Kim, Nayoung1
  • Gabbe, Belinda J1, 2
  • Mitra, Biswadev1, 3
  • Dietze, Paul M4, 5
  • Reeder, Sandra1
  • Scott, Debbie1, 6
  • Beck, Ben1
  • 1 Monash University, Melbourne, VIC, Australia. , (Australia)
  • 2 Swansea University, Swansea, UK.
  • 3 Emergency and Trauma Centre, The Alfred Hospital, Melbourne, VIC, Australia. , (Australia)
  • 4 Burnet Institute, Melbourne, VIC, Australia. , (Australia)
  • 5 Curtin University, Perth, WA, Australia. , (Australia)
  • 6 Turning Point, Melbourne, VIC, Australia. , (Australia)
Type
Published Article
Journal
Trauma Violence & Abuse
Publisher
SAGE Publications
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2024
Volume
25
Issue
1
Pages
306–326
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1177/15248380221150951
PMID: 36794786
Source
Medline
Keywords
Language
English
License
Unknown

Abstract

Substance use is a risk factor for being both a perpetrator and a victim of violence. The aim of this systematic review was to report the prevalence of acute pre-injury substance use in patients with violence-related injuries. Systematic searches were used to identify observational studies that included patients aged ≥15 years presenting to hospital after violence-related injuries and used objective toxicology measures to report prevalence of acute pre-injury substance use. Studies were grouped based on injury cause (any violence-related, assault, firearm, and other penetrating injuries including stab and incised wounds) and substance type (any substance, alcohol only, drugs other than alcohol only), and they were summarized using narrative synthesis and meta-analyses. This review included 28 studies. Alcohol was detected in 13%-66% of any violence-related injuries (five studies), 4%-71% of assaults (13 studies), 21%-45% of firearm injuries (six studies; pooled estimate = 41%, 95% CI: 40%-42%, n = 9,190), and 9%-66% of other penetrating injuries (nine studies; pooled estimate = 60%, 95% CI: 56%-64%, n = 6,950). Drugs other than alcohol were detected in 37% of any violence-related injuries (one study), 39% of firearm injuries (one study), 7%-49% of assaults (five studies), and 5%-66% of penetrating injuries (three studies). The prevalence of any substance varied across injury categories: any violence-related injuries = 76%-77% (three studies), assaults = 40%-73% (six studies), firearms = n/a, other penetrating injuries = 26%-45% (four studies; pooled estimate = 30%, 95% CI: 24%-37%, n = 319).Overall, substance use was frequently detected in patients presenting to hospital for violence-related injuries. Quantification of substance use in violence-related injuries provides a benchmark for harm reduction and injury prevention strategies.

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