Introduction: Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is of the most challenging public health problems. Aim: The aim of this study was to investigate the epidemiology of mild TBI, frequency of clinically important head injuries identifiable on computed tomography (CT) scans and also short-time outcomes of mild TBI in elderly population in north of Iran. Patients nd Methods: A prospective epidemiological study was conducted at the Emergency department of Imam Khomeini general hospital, Mazandaran, Iran. Inclusion criteria were age older than 60, Glasgow coma scale (GCS) score of 13-15, and a single head trauma. Data were collected by retrospective chart review, interview with patients or their caregivers and contact with them after a week from time of discharge or transferring to another wards. Results: Response rate was estimated at 67.8% (n: 122/180). Mean age of patients was 65.54±6.42 years. 82% of patients were younger than 70. Mean time from head trauma to hospital admission was 270 minutes. In majority of patients, mechanism of trauma was fall (28%) and then interpersonal violence (25%). 6.6% (95% CI: 2.87 to 12.5%) of patients suffered from important radiologically head injuries and 2.5% (95% CI: 0.5- 7.00) were readmitted to hospital within a week. Conclusion: Time to admission for minor TBI in elderly patients was too long and could be of clinical concern. Considering the lower prevalence of important radiologically head injury among elderly population, using any clinical guideline for indication of CT scan may be more cost-effective than routine use of CT scan. Although short term outcomes of minor TBI were less threatening and not lethal but these patients need follow-up.
Key words: Craniocerebral Trauma, Aged, Tomography, X-Ray Computed, Iran.