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Weekend Admission and Mortality in Patients With Traumatic Brain Injury: A Meta-analysis.

OBJECTIVE: Previous studies have reported the presence of a "weekend effect" with respect to mortality in serious emergency admissions, including cases of traumatic brain injury (TBI). However, the relationship between weekend hospitalization and TBI mortality has not been fully established. This study aimed to conduct a systematic review of available evidence and investigate differences in mortality among TBI patients between weekday and weekend admissions.

METHODS: Electronic databases including PubMed, Cochrane Library, and Embase were used to obtain relevant articles. Mortality, as the primary outcome of interest, encompassed in-hospital or 30-day mortality. Mortality rates were compared between the 2 groups, weekend and weekday admissions. Additionally, meta-regression analysis was performed on potential confounders to verify and provide comparative results.

RESULTS: A total of 7 studies involving 522,942 TBI patients were eligible for inclusion in the synthesis of the systematic review. Of these patients, 71.6% were admitted during weekdays, whereas 28.4% were hospitalized on weekends. The overall integrated mortality was 11.0% (57,286/522,942), with a mortality rate of 10.8% in the weekday group and 11.3% in the weekend group. Pooled analysis revealed no significant difference in mortality between the weekday and weekend groups (risk ratio, 0.99; 95% confidence interval, 0.90-1.09; p =0.78). Furthermore, the meta-regression analysis for sensitivity assessment showed no modifying effect on mortality ( p =0.79).

CONCLUSION: This study found no difference in mortality rates between weekday and weekend admissions among TBI patients. Additional sensitivity analyses also demonstrated no significant increase in the risk of mortality in the weekend group.

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