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J Gerontol Nurs. 2012 Feb;38(2):14-27; quiz 28-9. doi: 10.3928/00989134-20111214-99. Epub 2011 Dec 29.

Blunt thoracic injury in older adults: application of Haddon's phase-factor matrix model.

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  • 1Department of Physiological Nursing, University of California, San Francisco, CA, USA.


Blunt thoracic injury (BTI) in older adults can lead to grave illness, permanent disability, and even death. Using Haddon's phase-factor matrix model, this article examines the phenomenon of BTI in older adults. Preventive, diagnostic, and treatment interventions are discussed from the perspective of the pre-event, event, and post-event phases. Relevant physiological and pathophysiological changes regarding senescence and injury are reviewed, as are the common mechanisms of blunt trauma and anatomic injury patterns seen in older adults. Considerations for clinical interventions and future research are also presented.

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