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EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF PHYSICAL AND REHABILITATION MEDICINE

A Journal on Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation after Pathological Events


Official Journal of the Italian Society of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine (SIMFER), European Society of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine (ESPRM), European Union of Medical Specialists - Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine Section (UEMS-PRM), Mediterranean Forum of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine (MFPRM), Hellenic Society of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine (EEFIAP)
In association with International Society of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine (ISPRM)
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ORIGINAL ARTICLES  SPINAL CORD INJURIES


Europa Medicophysica 2000 September;35(3):155-60

language: English

GISEM: The methodology of the study

Spizzichino L.

Department of Prevention, Ministry of Health, Rome, Italy


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BACKGROUND: The Italian Group for the Epidemiological Study of Spinal Cord Injuries (­GISEM) is ­formed by phy­si­cians and ­health ­care work­ers ded­i­cat­ed to the ­field of reha­bil­i­ta­tion. It was creat­ed in 1996 ­with the aim of stud­y­ing the char­ac­ter­is­tics and man­age­ment of ­patients ­with spi­nal ­cord inju­ries (SCI). The aim of the ­present ­work is to ­describe the meth­o­dol­o­gy of the ­study.
METHODS: The ­study ­involved set­ting up a mul­ti-cen­tre data­base on SCI in Italy. Information was col­lect­ed pros­pec­tive­ly ­from ­each cen­tre and con­cerned dis­charg­es ­from the par­tic­i­pat­ing cen­tres in the peri­od February 1 1997 - January 31, 1999. Data ­were col­lect­ed ­using an 80-­item com­pu­ter­ised ­form, record­ed on flop­py ­disk and ­sent to the co-ordi­nat­ing cen­tre for anal­y­sis eve­ry ­three ­months. The sci­en­tif­ic com­mit­tee ­that pro­posed and organ­ised the ­study ­drew up the pro­to­col. Meetings ­were ­held by the com­mit­tee eve­ry six ­months to dis­cuss the ­progress of the ­study.
RESULTS: Thirty-sev­en cen­tres most­ly sit­u­at­ed in north­ern and cen­tral Italy par­tic­i­pat­ed. When the ­study was con­clud­ed on January 31 1999, infor­ma­tion on 2210 admis­sions for SCI had ­been col­lect­ed. Of ­these, 280 ­were per­sons admit­ted ­more ­than ­once and/or to dif­fer­ent cen­tres dur­ing the ­study peri­od.
CONCLUSIONS: The ­GISEM ­study has pro­vid­ed the larg­est Italian ­data set on SCI, gath­er­ing a ­large ­body of infor­ma­tion on aetio­lo­gy and the ­care and reha­bil­i­ta­tion of SCI ­patients. This infor­ma­tion pro­vides a ­base on ­which ­future ­health ­care pol­i­cies can be eval­u­at­ed and ­acts as a ­source for improv­ing the stan­dard of ­care and reha­bil­i­ta­tion in Italy.

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