Journal of the neurological sciences 2016 10 12371() 100-104 pii 10.1016/j.jns.2016.10.016
Reliable data on severe head injury mortality is rarely reported in Sub-Saharan African countries and in Cameroon in particular. It was for this reason that for the first time ever a prospective study was carried out during a one year period in the university hospitals and some selected regional and district hospitals in Cameroon.
MATERIALS AND METHODS
All the patients admitted for head injury in the emergency units of the selected hospitals were enrolled and followed up over a period of one month.
A total of 2835 consecutive patients were included with a sex ratio M/F=3.7/1. One hundred and seventy nine (179) patients lost to follow up were not included. The mortality rate was 77% in the severe head injury group, 16% in the moderate head injury group and 1% in the mild head injury group. In the group of severely injured patients, the mortality rates were very high in the academic hospitals (Laquintinie Hospital of Douala, General Hospital of Douala, Yaounde Central Hospital, and Yaounde University Hospital; 83%, 83%, 81%, and 73% respectively) and in the Regional Hospital of Garoua (84%).
Mortality rates associated with head injury remain very high in Cameroon, and this is likely true in many countries across Sub-Saharan Africa. The figures approach the mortality expected in the natural history of the disease. Strategic plans should be taken at the local and national levels as in the case of maternal mortality and HIV infections.