257038 Measuring self-reported recall of unintentional musculoskeletal injuries in an Army Airborne Division

Monday, October 29, 2012

Mita Lovalekar, MBBS, PhD, MPH , Department of Sports Medicine and Nutrition, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
John Abt, PhD, ATC , Department of Sports Medicine and Nutrition, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
Timothy Sell, PhD, PT , Department of Sports Medicine and Nutrition, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
Takashi Nagai, PhD, ATC , Department of Sports Medicine and Nutrition, University of Pittsburgh, Ft. Campbell, KY
Jennifer Deluzio, MS, CSCS , Department of Sports Medicine and Nutrition, University of Pittsburgh, Ft. Campbell, KY
Michael Wirt, COL MIL USA FORSCOM , Deputy Commander of Clinical Services at Blanchfield Army Community Hospital, Blanchfield Army Community Hospital, Ft Campbell, KY
Scott Lephart, PhD , Department of Sports Medicine and Nutrition, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
Background/Purpose: Self-reported data are often used in epidemiology, but self-reported recall of comprehensive injury data has not been measured among soldiers. The aim of this analysis was to assess self-reported recall of unintentional musculoskeletal injuries among soldiers in an Army Airborne Division.

Methods: Self-reported and medical chart-reviewed injuries among 115 soldiers (age 26.6 5.8 years (mean SD), 87.0% male) were matched by anatomic location, side (for extremity injuries), year, and type. The injuries included in the analysis were those that had occurred during the year of survey (recent injuries), and during the preceding calendar year (old injuries). Recall was expressed as the percent of medical chart-reviewed injuries correctly recalled in the self-report. Proportions were compared using the Fisher's exact test.

Results/Outcomes: Eighty-seven injuries were recorded in the medical charts. Common injury types were pain/spasm/ache (29/87, 33.3% of the injuries), sprain (18/87, 20.7%), and strain (15/87, 17.2%). Overall, recall was low (9/87 = 10.3%). Recall was higher for severe injuries (traumatic/stress fractures, 1/4 = 25.0%) as compared to less severe injuries (non-fracture injuries, 8/83 = 9.6%), but the difference was not statistically significant (p = 0.359). Recall was higher for recent injuries (3/26 = 11.5%) as compared to old injuries (6/61 = 9.8%), but the difference was not statistically significant (p = 1.000).

Conclusion: The low self-reported recall in this study underscores the need for further investigation of factors affecting recall and strategies to improve accuracy of recall of injury data in various military populations.

Learning Areas:
Epidemiology
Occupational health and safety
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
1. List factors affecting self-reported recall of unintentional musculoskeletal injuries in an Army Airborne Division. 2. Describe common unintentional musculoskeletal injuries recorded in the medical charts of soldiers in an Army Airborne Division.

Keywords: Injury, Epidemiology

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have a doctoral degree in epidemiology, and research experience in injury surveillance, injury prevention and injury epidemiology. I am working on research projects designed to prevent unintentional musculoskeletal injuries in the military.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.