March 20 (UPI) -- Men are more likely than women to be readmitted to a hospital after a firearm injury, according to a study.
Researchers at Boston University School of Medicine found that six months after a firearm injury, men were 3.3 times more likely than women to be readmitted to the hospital for heart-related problems. Their findings were published Tuesday in the American Journal of Men's Health.
Also, men were 40 percent more likely than women to be readmitted for any reason within the first three months after the initial injury.
"This study is the first to compare male and female survivors of firearm injury after their initial hospitalization," Dr. Bindu Kalesan, assistant professor of medicine at BUSM said in a press release. "Since hospitals are financially penalized for admissions, these results may lead to male-specific programs to improve health outcomes after firearm injuries."
The researchers said the cost of acute and longer term medical care and recovery for firearm injury patients has increased greatly over the past 10 years.
"Cardiovascular readmissions are greater among males than females during the first 6 months after injury and may be indicative of a continuing long-term risk of health and patient outcomes that contributes to the overall burden of firearm injury," the researchers wrote.
In 2015, the death rate by firearms for men was 6.1 times the rate for females -- 31,032 vs. 5,220 -- according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Boston University researchers relied on the Nationwide Readmission Database for data from 2013-14. They analyzed the total readmission visits, total cost of hospitalization, cost per readmission, total length of stay in days and length of stay per readmission in days.
There were 14 million hospital discharges in 2013 and another 14 million in 2014. Using data from both years, there were 19,166 male hospitalizations from firearms and 2,527 women.
A total of 1,809 died during the hospitalization after firearms injuries.
Within 180, 14,4 percent of men, or 2,531, were readmitted, compared to 13.2 percent of women, or 303.
For those readmitted to the hospital after firearm injuries, 4 out of 100 were related to cardiovascular diagnosis in men and 3 out of 100 were women.