• Alcohol;
  • facial trauma;
  • IPV;
  • mandible fracture


Background:  Alcohol as a cofactor in interpersonal violence (IPV) has been established by studies from a number of countries. This study aimed to determine if alcohol was a cofactor in the incidence or severity of mandible fracture.

Methods:  A prospective study of mandible fracture patients presenting for oral maxillofacial review over 16 months was completed. Injury severity was assessed utilizing the Mandible Injury Severity Score (MISS).

Results:  A total of 252 facial trauma cases presented to our tertiary referral centre, 83 with fractures of the mandible. The majority of presentations were secondary to IPV (n = 54, 65.06%), 49 (90.74%) of these cases involved alcohol. Overall, alcohol was involved in 63.85% of cases (n = 53). The relative risk of requiring surgical intervention with alcohol involvement was 2.68 (CI = 1.11–9.47). Alcohol significantly increased facial fracture severity for MISS: alcohol (n = 53) 13.07 ± 5.01, no alcohol (n = 30) 11.03 ± 4.87 (p < 0.05). IPV also increased facial fracture severity for MISS: IPV (n = 54) 13.09 ± 4.90, non-IPV (n = 29) 11.00 ± 4.81 (p < 0.05). The angle of the mandible was most commonly fractured (40.5% of cases).

Conclusions:  Mandible fracture patients, whose injury is a result of IPV, have more severe fractures and a higher likelihood of requiring surgery if alcohol is involved. This correlates to a higher surgical workload, economic and social burden to the community. Primary alcohol and IPV prevention strategies will play an important role in reducing mandible fracture.