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Dog bite injuries in the USA: prevalence, correlates and recent trends.

Dog bite-related injuries are associated with high medical costs. The aim of this study was to estimate the prevalence, correlates and recent trends in dog bite injuries among male and female individuals presenting to US emergency departments. The prevalence of dog bites was calculated for years 2010-2014 using the Nationwide Emergency Department Sample. Sex-stratified multivariate logistic regression analyses were conducted with 'dog bite' as the dependent variable and patient and hospital characteristics as independent variables. Overall, the prevalence of dog bite injuries decreased from 2010 to 2014. The prevalence is highest in this sample among male youth. Male individuals diagnosed with an externalising behaviour disorder were more likely to present with a dog bite (OR=1.21, 95% CI 1.27 to 1.30). While the prevalence of dog bites has decreased in recent years, this costly and largely preventable injury remains a concern, especially among youth.

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