CDSP Recipients Spring 2017

Recipient: Donavon J. Hess, MD, University of Minnesota

Title: “Race differences in the use of intracranial pressure monitoring and inpatient rehabilitation among young men with traumatic brain injury.”

Research Question/Hypothesis: Young African American males with traumatic brain injury are less likely to have appropriate intracranial pressure monitoring and are less likely to be discharged to inpatient rehabilitation when compared to individuals of other racial groups.  There are disparities in the care provided to young African-American males with traumatic brain injury in the early hospital course and in post hospital care.

Abstract: Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a frequent cause of admission to trauma centers. TBI often has life-changing effects for victims. Proper early management of TBI (including intracranial pressure monitoring) and effective post-discharge rehabilitation can significantly improve survival and functional outcomes from TBI. Race-based disparities have been observed in adults with TBI, but contains very little information on children and young adults. We expect that there may be race-based disparities in the treatment of young people with TBI. A preliminary analysis of case numbers from the NTDB indicates that between 2010 and 2014, 166,027 young people suffered TBI, and of these, 25,408 were African American, 104,596 were white, and 36,023 were other races. These numbers indicate a significant impact of TBI on young people, and should be sufficient to perform an analysis to detect disparities, and to assess the impact of many variables on the disparities.


Recipient: Catherine St. Hill, DVM, PhD, University of Minnesota

Title: “Does rurality impact depression in African American men diagnosed with prostate cancer?”

Research Question/Hypothesis: Differences in the prevalence of selected chronic conditions are associated with social determinants of health factors leading to health disparities in African American men. The chronic conditions to be examined are: diabetes mellitus, hypertension, prostate cancer, and depression. These disease states constitute the dependent variables for the planned analyses. The planned independent variables or predictive variables are race/ethnicity, household income, geographic locale, attained education, health insurance status, health services utilization, age range, and violence related injury.

Abstract: Earlier research has yielded that health disparities among African American men are not only notable but are staggering. Continuing to examine the patterns of health and health care disparities are a significantly part of social epidemiology that can ultimately impact public health and health care policies. This is particularly important if one understands that patterns of disease and health are socially determined or created. It is quite likely that the findings from this research will reveal disparities regarding African American men in comparison to Caucasian, Hispanic, and Asian men. The magnitude of the disparities may fluctuate based on changing social conditions such as availability of universal health insurance, accessibility to health care providers, levels of employment, availability of housing and shelter, and experience with violence. Future steps would include using the information obtained from this project to design effective interventions to address the health disparities that impact African American men.