Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Injuries in Children Who Use Pediatric Mobility Aids

Pediatrics will be publishing research in the incidence of injuries related to pediatric mobility aids such as wheelchairs and crutches. US hospital records were analyzed from 1991-2008. Over 63,000 children, 19 years and younger, were evaluated in the emergency room for injuries related to mobility devices. The highest rate of injury occurred in wheelchair users accounting for 70% of the injuries. Younger children, aged 2-10 years old, were more likely to sustain injuries from walker and wheelchair use. This age group suffered more head injuries and traumatic brain injuries. The older age group, 11-19 years of age, sustained more injuries with crutches, strains and sprains. Older children were also at greater risk for injuries that occurred during transfers.

The wheelchair injuries in general were more likely to results in head trauma and hospitalization. The injuries due to crutch use were more likely to be due to lack of proper use, stairs and curbs. The researchers recommend additional research to establish injury prevention techniques.

Barnard, Alison M., Nelson, Nicolas G., Xiang, Huiyun, McKenzie, Lara B.
Pediatric Mobility Aid-Related Injuries Treated in US Emergency Departments From 1991 to 2008
Pediatrics 2010 0: peds.2009-3286

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