OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study is to describe the epidemiological profile of trauma victims assisted in a public hospital in Fortaleza - Brazil. It also intends to establish a relationship between the waiting time for primary care and the satisfaction level of those patients. Another topic assessed here is the analysis of the most frequent musculoskeletal pathologies in this population. METHODS: A cohort randomized study was conducted during 2002-2003 in a public trauma hospital in Fortaleza - Brazil, where 500 emergency patients were enrolled. RESULTS: The epidemiological profile found in this study is as follows: males (60.4%), young adults (ages ranging 15 - 30 years old) (55%), Fortaleza residents (74%), low familiar income (60%), and relatively healthy, being the fractures the most frequent lesions observed (48%). CONCLUSION: Patients assisted in trauma hospitals constitute a major social problem, and, most of the cases, they present with severe lesions, which demonstrates the need and importance of investments in emergency medical services.
Fractures; Injuries and lesions; Emergency Medical Services; Epidemiology