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Pious D. Patel, Katherine A. Kelly, Heidi Chen, Amber Greeno, Chevis N. Shannon, and Robert P. Naftel

OBJECTIVE

Rural-dwelling children may suffer worse pediatric traumatic brain injury (TBI) outcomes due to distance from and accessibility to high-volume trauma centers. This study aimed to compare the impacts of institutional TBI volume and sociodemographics on outcomes between rural- and urban-dwelling children.

METHODS

This retrospective study identified patients 0–19 years of age with ICD-9 codes for TBI in the 2012–2015 National Inpatient Sample database. Patients were characterized as rural- or urban-dwelling using United States Census classification. Logistic and linear (in log scale) regressions were performed to measure the effects of institutional characteristics, patient sociodemographics, and mechanism/severity of injury on occurrence of medical complications, mortality, length of stay (LOS), and costs. Separate models were built for rural- and urban-dwelling patients.

RESULTS

A total of 19,736 patients were identified (median age 11 years, interquartile range [IQR] 2–16 years, 66% male, 55% Caucasian). Overall, rural-dwelling patients had higher All Patient Refined Diagnosis Related Groups injury severity (median 2 [IQR 1–3] vs 1 [IQR 1–2], p < 0.001) and more intracranial monitoring (6% vs 4%, p < 0.001). Univariate analysis showed that overall, rural-dwelling patients suffered increased medical complications (6% vs 4%, p < 0.001), mortality (6% vs 4%, p < 0.001), and LOS (median 2 days [IQR 1–4 days ] vs 2 days [IQR 1–3 days], p < 0.001), but multivariate analysis showed rural-dwelling status was not associated with these outcomes after adjusting for injury severity, mechanism, and hospital characteristics. Institutional TBI volume was not associated with medical complications, disposition, or mortality for either population but was associated with LOS for urban-dwelling patients (nonlinear beta, p = 0.008) and cost for both rural-dwelling (nonlinear beta, p < 0.001) and urban-dwelling (nonlinear beta, p < 0.001) patients.

CONCLUSIONS

Overall, rural-dwelling pediatric patients with TBI have worsened injury severity, mortality, and in-hospital complications, but these disparities disappear after adjusting for injury severity and mechanism. Institutional TBI volume does not impact clinical outcomes for rural- or urban-dwelling children after adjusting for these covariates. Addressing the root causes of the increased injury severity at hospital arrival may be a useful path to improve TBI outcomes for rural-dwelling children.

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Ranbir Ahluwalia, Jarrett Foster, Madeleine M. Sherburn, Georgina E. Sellyn, Katherine A. Kelly, Muhammad Owais Abdul Ghani, Alyssa L. Wiseman, Chevis N. Shannon, and Christopher M. Bonfield

OBJECTIVE

The incidence of deformational brachycephaly has risen since the “Back to Sleep” movement in 1992 by the American Academy of Pediatrics. Brachycephaly prevalence and understanding the dynamic nature of the pediatric skull have not been explored in relation to the cranial index (CI). The objective of the study was to determine the prevalence of brachycephaly, via the CI, with respect to time.

METHODS

The authors conducted a retrospective review of 1499 patients ≤ 19 years of age who presented for trauma evaluation with a negative CT scan for trauma (absence of bleed) in 2018. The CI was calculated using CT at the lateral-most point of the parietal bone (cephalic width), and the distance from the glabella to the opisthocranion (cephalic length). Brachycephaly was defined as a CI ≥ 90%.

RESULTS

The mean CI was 82.6, with an average patient age of 6.8 years. The prevalence of deformational brachycephaly steadily decreased from 27% to 4% from birth to > 2 years of life. The mean CI was statistically different between ages < 12 months, 12–24 months, and > 24 months (F[2,1496] = 124.058, p < 0.0005). A simple linear regression was calculated to predict the CI based on age; the CI was found to decrease by 0.038 each month. A significant regression equation was found (F[1,1497] = 296.846, p < 0.0005), with an R2 of 0.140.

CONCLUSIONS

The incidence of deformational brachycephaly is common in infants but decreases as the child progresses through early childhood. Clinicians can expect a significant decrease in mean CI at 12 and 24 months. Additionally, these regression models show that clinicians can expect continued improvement throughout childhood.

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Rebecca A. Reynolds, Ranbir Ahluwalia, Vishal Krishnan, Katherine A. Kelly, Jaclyn Lee, Raymond P. Waldrop, Bradley Guidry, Astrid C. Hengartner, Justin McCroskey, Anastasia Arynchyna, Susan Staulcup, Heidi Chen, Todd C. Hankinson, Brandon G. Rocque, Chevis N. Shannon, and Robert Naftel

OBJECTIVE

Children whose ventricles do not change during shunt malfunction present a diagnostic dilemma. This study was performed to identify risk factors for unchanged ventricular size at shunt malfunction.

METHODS

This retrospective 1:1 age-matched case-control study identified children with shunted hydrocephalus who underwent shunt revision with intraoperative evidence of malfunction at one of the three participating institutions from 1997 to 2019. Cases were defined as patients with a change of < 0.05 in the frontal–occipital horn ratio (FOR) between malfunction and baseline, and controls included patients with FOR changes ≥ 0.05. The presence of infection, abdominal pseudocyst, pseudomeningocele, or wound drainage and lack of baseline cranial imaging at the time of malfunction warranted exclusion.

RESULTS

Of 450 included patients, 60% were male, 73% were Caucasian, and 67% had an occipital shunt. The median age was 4.3 (IQR 0.97–9.21) years at malfunction. On univariable analysis, unchanged ventricles at malfunction were associated with a frontal shunt (41% vs 28%, p < 0.001), programmable valve (17% vs 9%, p = 0.011), nonsiphoning shunt (85% vs 66%, p < 0.001), larger baseline FOR (0.44 ± 0.12 vs 0.38 ± 0.11, p < 0.001), no prior shunt infection (87% vs 76%, p = 0.003), and no prior shunt revisions (68% vs 52%, p < 0.001). On multivariable analysis with collinear variables removed, patients with a frontal shunt (OR 1.67, 95% CI 1.08–2.70, p = 0.037), programmable valve (OR 2.63, 95% CI 1.32–5.26, p = 0.007), nonsiphoning shunt at malfunction (OR 2.76, 95% CI 1.63–4.67, p < 0.001), larger baseline FOR (OR 3.13, 95% CI 2.21–4.43, p < 0.001), and no prior shunt infection (OR 2.34, 95% CI 1.27–4.30, p = 0.007) were more likely to have unchanged ventricles at malfunction.

CONCLUSIONS

In a multicenter cohort of children with shunt malfunction, those with a frontal shunt, programmable valve, nonsiphoning shunt, baseline large ventricles, and no prior shunt infection were more likely than others to have unchanged ventricles at shunt failure.

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Oral Presentations

2010 AANS Annual Meeting Philadelphia, Pennsylvania May 1–5, 2010