Women are less likely than men to receive pre-hospital analgesia for isolated extremity injuries, according to a retrospective study at the University of California.
Injuries included suspected fractures, dislocation, and laceration to the upper or lower extremity. Analyzing 953 cases from a large emergency medical services agency, the researchers found that 279 patients received morphine; 32.8% of the men and only 26.7% of the women received analgesia. Patients with more severe pain and a longer duration of prehospital care were more likely to receive prehospital analgesia. The rate of analgesia also increased with the level of income.
Although analgesia has been extensively studied in the prehospital setting, few studies have examined the impact of a patient’s sex on analgesia administration. The researchers say that to their knowledge, no other study has examined the role of socioeconomic status.
(Source: Am J Emerg 2007;25:901-906.)