Every year, residents of Michigan are impacted by traumatic brain injuries, often referred to as TBIs. These serious injuries are often caused by motor vehicle accidents. Sadly, TBIs account for a high number of deaths, and it has been found that minorities are disproportionately affected.
Who is most affected by deaths related to traumatic brain injury?
According to a study, catastrophic brain injuries affect millions of people each year. Many survive their injuries, but others succumb to them. In 2017, there were 61,000 deaths related to TBIs. It was discovered that individuals most impacted are male and of Native American or Alaskan Native descent as they had the highest rate of TBI-related deaths.
How do TBI-related deaths compare with deaths from other situations?
Catastrophic brain injuries were compared with other types of deaths to determine how they compare and who is most impacted by them. From 2015 to 2017, around 44% of all deaths related to TBIs were intentional injuries, either suicides or homicides. However, the percentage varied depending on the victim’s ethnicity or race. Native American or Alaskan Native men accounted for the highest percentage of people who died of catastrophic brain injuries. This method of death was also higher than those from motor vehicle accidents.
The study found that over a 10-year period, individuals with TBIs who ended up in hospitals were those who were involved in car crashes and suicides. It was found that more TBI deaths from suicide occurred than those from vehicle accidents during that same time period.
It was also discovered that Black people were disproportionately affected in comparison to all other racial or ethnic groups. TBI deaths among this group of people were mostly due to homicides.
Another problem among minorities who suffered TBIs is that some groups were misclassified. This was particularly an issue for individuals of Native American or Alaskan Native and Asian or Pacific Island descent.
The study concluded that the key to preventing deaths related to TBI among minorities is understanding the contributors to those deaths. It also stated that knowing which groups are most at risk can help to prevent these devastating injuries and that medical professionals can be integral in assessing people for an increased risk.