The results of a new study in which shot survivors participated are unlikely to surprise you – but they are no less depressing. It suggests that many years later, many survivors are physically and mentally devastated by their experiences.
Interviews with more than 180 gunshot survivors who were treated after January 2008 in a local trauma center. Most were men and were over 20 years old at the time of the shooting. On average, patients were contacted about six years after their injury.
While this is not the first study to examine long-term health by trauma survivors, the authors reported that the focus was relatively low, especially on shot survivors. And fewer studies have relied on patient interviews.
Compared to their lives before the shooting, they found that people were more likely to be unemployed and to consume alcohol and other drugs. Nearly half were also positive for post-traumatic stress disorder. Compared to the general population, the survivors were worse physically and mentally.
the authors wrote.
As disappointing as these findings are, they are associated with some limitations. The team first attempted to reach over 2,500 patients in but telephoned only 263 . This group was further reduced to include only the victims of assaults while no victims of self-injury were interviewed at all
. ready to be interviewed. And researchers were unable to obtain information about socioeconomic status or education levels. Both factors can obviously influence how easily someone can recover from a traumatic event like a shot.
But it is clear, wrote the authors. that the "long-term consequences of firearm injuries exceed mortality and economic burdens". M All survivors could benefit from long term care to improve their chances of recovery after injury, according to the team .
] As a result of their research, the authors claimed to have developed a program for the identification and tracking of shot survivors in their local trauma clinic. The program is designed to facilitate tracking human health over time, and to continuously assist them in their physical and mental health.