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Neck injuries linked to high costs for patients and spouses, reports study in Spine
Date:3/11/2013

Philadelphia, Pa. (March 11, 2013) - Patients with neck injuries incur increased health and social costswhich also affect their spouses and may begin years before the initial injury, reports a study in the March 1 issue of Spine. The journal is published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, a part of Wolters Kluwer Health.

Some individuals and families seem more susceptible to experiencing socioeconomic consequences of neck injury, according to the new research by Dr Poul Jennum of University of Copenhagen and colleagues. Particularly for patients who develop chronic neck pain, the health and social costs may start to increase a decade or more before neck injury occurs

Higher Health and Social Costs for Patients with Neck Injuries

To analyze the "socioeconomic burdens" of neck injuries, the researchers used Danish national databases to identify approximately 94,000 patients who sustained neck injuries (other than fractures) from 1998 to 2009. The patients with neck injuries were matched to controls without neck injuries.

In addition to direct health care costs and prescription drugs, the study addressed indirect costs such as work disability and social security payments. The researchers also assessed health and social costs for the spouses of patients with neck injury; as well as changes in costs over time, including the years before the injury.

Nearly all cost categories were increased for patients with neck injuries. "Neck injury patients had significantly higher rates of health-related contacts, medication use and higher socioeconomic costs than controls," Dr Jennum and coauthors write. The spouses of patients with neck injuries also ha
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Contact: Connie Hughes
connie.hughes@wolterskluwer.com
646-674-6348
Wolters Kluwer Health
Source:Eurekalert

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