February 06, 2016
1 min read

Elbow dislocations result in longer removal from play among high school athletes

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Compared with nondislocation-associated elbow injuries, high school athletes who had elbow dislocations experienced longer removal from play and were more likely to require surgical treatment, according to results.

Researchers analyzed sports-related injury data for the 2005 to 2006 through 2013 to 2014 academic years from 810 high schools that participated in the National High School Sports-Related Injury Surveillance Study. Of 1,246 elbow injuries, 115 (9.2%) were elbow dislocations and athletic trainers reported 30,415,179 athlete exposures.

Results showed most dislocations occurred in boys’ wrestling (46.1%) and football (37.4%), with 91.3% of all dislocations occurring in boys’ sports. Researchers found higher rates of elbow dislocation in competition vs. practice. Most injuries occurred during varsity sports activities among both boys (60.4%) and girls (88.9%), according to results.

The most common injury mechanism was contact with another person at 46.9%, followed by contact with the playing surface at 46%, results showed. Compared with other elbow injuries, researchers noted dislocations more commonly resulted in removal from play for more than 3 weeks or medical disqualification, and were more often treated by surgery. – by Casey Tingle

Disclosure: The researchers report no relevant financial disclosures.