Alik and colleagues noted "45% of IPV injuries involve the eyes. Many medical fields have increased IPV-related research; however, ophthalmology IPV research remains rare.”
A study determined risk factors associated intimate partner violence (IPV) and ocular trauma that can be useful for identifying victims.1 This may put ophthalmologists on the front lines of recognizing IPV, according to lead author Maya Alik, BHSc, from McGill University Faculty of Medicine, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
Alik and colleagues noted that IPV “is an important cause of death and disability worldwide. The literature estimates that 45% of IPV injuries involve the eyes. Many medical fields have increased IPV-related research; however, ophthalmology IPV research remains rare.”
The researchers conducted a retrospective cross-sectional analysis with deidentified data using the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems, Tenth Revision, Clinical Modification codes from the National Trauma Data Bank. Using this database, IPV-related ocular injuries of patients hospitalized between 2017 and 2019 were identified. The study goal was to evaluate the epidemiologic pattern and injury mechanism of IPV related to ocular trauma.
The research team collected the following demographic data: sex, age, race and ethnicity, health insurance plan, substance misuse screening results, trauma level of hospital, emergency department disposition, total Glasgow Coma Scale score, abbreviated injury scale, and the caregiver at the time of discharge.
The search of the database identified that 2598 of the recorded ocular injuries were associated with IPV. The patients were a mean age of 45.2 years, most ranging in age from 18 to 39 years; 62.3% were women.
The race and ethnicity were distributed as follows: 629 Black (24.2%), 296 Hispanic (11.4%), 1358 White (52.3%), 229 other (8.8%), and 86 unknown (3.3%).
Most patients had Medicaid (32.6%), followed by Medicare (20.2%), private insurance 20.2%), and self-pay (18.8%). Black patients were most likely to have Medicaid (OR, 1.64; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.35-1.99; P < .001), Hispanic patients were most likely to self-pay (OR, 1.96, 95% CI, 1.48-2.58; P < .001), and White patients were most likely to use Medicare (OR, 2.94, 95% CI, 2.33-3.73; P < .001), the results showed.
The analysis also showed that women had higher odds of testing positive during alcohol screening (odds ratio [OR], 1.42; 95% CI, 1.21-1.67; P < .001).
The investigators concluded, “Social determinants of health were identified as key risk factors for IPV-related ocular injuries. Study findings highlight identifiable risk factors associated with IPV and ocular trauma that can contribute to IPV awareness among ophthalmologists.”