Meeting NewsPerspective

Rates of trampoline-related fractures jump among children

Photo of Nancy Miller
Nancy Hadley-Miller

NEW ORLEANS — Research presented at the AAP National Conference & Exhibition highlighted a significant increase in the number of trampoline-related fractures sustained by children between 2008 and 2017.

Researchers noted that the rise in trampoline-related injuries overlapped with an increase in the popularity of trampoline parks.

“Based on our data, we do not know exactly why this significant increase in pediatric trampoline fractures occurred,” Nancy Hadley-Miller, MD, professor and pediatric orthopedic surgeon at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus and Children’s Hospital of Colorado, told Infectious Diseases in Children. “An increase in participation at places of recreation or sport may be a contributing factor.”

Although the data did not show a cause-and-effect relationship between the increase in trampoline fractures and the rising popularity of trampoline parks, Hadley-Miller said the study “lays the groundwork to answer this question in the future.”

The researchers gathered data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System on trampoline-related fractures in children aged 0 to 17 years. All fractures occurred between 2008 and 2017. They collected specific data on the year the injury occurred, gender and age of the patient, anatomical location of the injury and in what setting the injury occurred.

Young girl jumping on trampoline at trampoline park 
Source: Adobe Stock

Hadley-Miller and colleagues reported an average increase of 3.85% (95% CI, 0.51%-7.3%) in the incidence of trampoline-related fractures during the study period, with the number of injuries rising from 35.3 per 100,000 person-years in 2008 to 53 injuries per 100,000 person-years in 2017.

Trampoline-related fractures accounted for 3.59% (95% CI, 3.04%-4.14%) of all fractures sustained by children in 2008. In 2017, the percentage jumped to 6.16% (95% CI, 5.31%-7.01%) according to Hadley-Miller and colleagues.

More than half (56%) of all fractures sustained while using a trampoline during the study period involved the upper extremities. During the study period, the researchers identified a significant increase in the number of injuries sustained at a place of sport or recreation (OR per year = 1.32; 95% CI, 1.21-1.43).

Hadley-Miller suggested that providers counsel their patients and families about trampoline use in accordance with the AAP guidelines on trampoline safety. The guidelines, she said, highlight the importance of adult supervision, setting trampolines on a level surface and limiting the trampoline to one jumper at a time.

“Regarding trampoline safety outside of the home, AAP guidelines suggest that commercial trampoline businesses inform users of the associated risk of jumping,” Hadley-Miller said. “Health care providers can help facilitate this conversation and ensure parental awareness of the content in the release forms they sign to allow participation. The rules and regulations of certain facilities may not align with the guidelines created by the AAP and may increase the risk for injury. We strongly encourage parents to understand and consider these risks.” – by Katherine Bortz

Reference:

Hadley-Miller N, et al. Rates of pediatric trampoline fractures are jumping: A national report (2008-2017). Presented at: AAP National Conference & Exhibition; Oct. 25-29, 2019; New Orleans.

Disclosure: Miller reports no relevant financial disclosures.

Photo of Nancy Miller
Nancy Hadley-Miller

NEW ORLEANS — Research presented at the AAP National Conference & Exhibition highlighted a significant increase in the number of trampoline-related fractures sustained by children between 2008 and 2017.

Researchers noted that the rise in trampoline-related injuries overlapped with an increase in the popularity of trampoline parks.

“Based on our data, we do not know exactly why this significant increase in pediatric trampoline fractures occurred,” Nancy Hadley-Miller, MD, professor and pediatric orthopedic surgeon at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus and Children’s Hospital of Colorado, told Infectious Diseases in Children. “An increase in participation at places of recreation or sport may be a contributing factor.”

Although the data did not show a cause-and-effect relationship between the increase in trampoline fractures and the rising popularity of trampoline parks, Hadley-Miller said the study “lays the groundwork to answer this question in the future.”

The researchers gathered data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System on trampoline-related fractures in children aged 0 to 17 years. All fractures occurred between 2008 and 2017. They collected specific data on the year the injury occurred, gender and age of the patient, anatomical location of the injury and in what setting the injury occurred.

Young girl jumping on trampoline at trampoline park 
Source: Adobe Stock

Hadley-Miller and colleagues reported an average increase of 3.85% (95% CI, 0.51%-7.3%) in the incidence of trampoline-related fractures during the study period, with the number of injuries rising from 35.3 per 100,000 person-years in 2008 to 53 injuries per 100,000 person-years in 2017.

Trampoline-related fractures accounted for 3.59% (95% CI, 3.04%-4.14%) of all fractures sustained by children in 2008. In 2017, the percentage jumped to 6.16% (95% CI, 5.31%-7.01%) according to Hadley-Miller and colleagues.

More than half (56%) of all fractures sustained while using a trampoline during the study period involved the upper extremities. During the study period, the researchers identified a significant increase in the number of injuries sustained at a place of sport or recreation (OR per year = 1.32; 95% CI, 1.21-1.43).

Hadley-Miller suggested that providers counsel their patients and families about trampoline use in accordance with the AAP guidelines on trampoline safety. The guidelines, she said, highlight the importance of adult supervision, setting trampolines on a level surface and limiting the trampoline to one jumper at a time.

“Regarding trampoline safety outside of the home, AAP guidelines suggest that commercial trampoline businesses inform users of the associated risk of jumping,” Hadley-Miller said. “Health care providers can help facilitate this conversation and ensure parental awareness of the content in the release forms they sign to allow participation. The rules and regulations of certain facilities may not align with the guidelines created by the AAP and may increase the risk for injury. We strongly encourage parents to understand and consider these risks.” – by Katherine Bortz

Reference:

Hadley-Miller N, et al. Rates of pediatric trampoline fractures are jumping: A national report (2008-2017). Presented at: AAP National Conference & Exhibition; Oct. 25-29, 2019; New Orleans.

Disclosure: Miller reports no relevant financial disclosures.

    Perspective
    Shital N. Parikh

    Shital N. Parikh

    The popularity of trampoline continues to increase, and it has been recognized as an Olympic sport. It’s a fun-filled physical activity that can help counteract the increase in childhood obesity and physical inactivity.

    However, the proportionate increase in trampoline-related injuries (including paralysis and death) has led the AAP and American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons to issue safety recommendations and discourage its recreational use. Despite these guidelines, the study authors reported an average yearly increase of 3.85% in trampoline-related fractures between 2008 and 2017. They further reported on the shift in the place of injury from home-based trampolines to trampoline parks.

    The current report raises an important question: Is the increase in these injuries related to increased trampoline use, or is trampoline use more dangerous in the setting of a trampoline park? Further research would help answer this question. Until then, physician-parent discussion on trampoline use should focus on safety concerns and involved risks.

    • Shital N. Parikh, MD, FACS
    • Professor of orthopedic surgery
      Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center
      University of Cincinnati School of Medicine

    Disclosures: Parikh reports no relevant financial disclosures.

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