Amino, Inc. a health care data insights firm, looked at 244 million claims in its database between 2012 and 2016 to determine the most common injuries in the U.S. for which people receive medical attention. As it turns out, almost one in six doctor visits include a physical injury diagnosis. Amino also identified different predominant injuries in different states, ones that are disproportionately frequent.
No matter which state you live in, having an “open wound”–essentially a cut–and “bruising” are the two most frequent injuries for which people receive medical attention. Colorado is the one exception, with falls as its most common injury. Curiously, bruises rank at the top in the northeast, south, California and Oregon and open wounds rank at the top everywhere else. You’re left wondering what explains this difference and whether this difference is more about doctor labeling than anything meaningful.
Behind open wounds and bruising, injuries that are disproportionately frequent in different states vary widely. Some of the variation is easier to understand than other variation. In Idaho, Utah, Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico and Nevada, suffocation is more common, perhaps because they are mountain states, and suffocation is related to oxygen deficiency. People in Hawaii tend to have a higher incidence of near-drowning diagnoses. Nebraska, Wyoming, Montana are a few of the states with a higher than normal proportion of “animal-drawn vehicle accident” diagnoses. New York residents are more likely than people in other states to get treatment related to an “unarmed fight or brawl.”
Who knows why, but motor vehicle accidents are more common in Tennessee, Arizona and California than in other states. Head injuries are more common in Florida. People in Massachusetts have disproportionately more concussions.