The most common tricycle-related injuries incurred by children are lacerations and internal organ damage to the head and fractures of the elbow, according to recent research in Pediatrics.
“The elbows are the most likely body part to fracture in a tricycle accident, underscoring the importance of elbow pads,” Stephen R. Pitts, MD, MPH, of Emory University School of Medicine, and colleagues wrote. “The head is the most frequently injured body part and most likely body part to endure internal organ damage.”
Stephen R. Pitts
The researchers analyzed data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System for 2012 and 2013. The system, monitored by the Consumer Product Safety Commission, includes real-time data from 98 hospital EDs nationwide regarding patients seen with toy-related injuries. The researchers categorized tricycle injuries by type, ED outcome, where the injury occurred and the body part affected.
During the study period, there were an estimated 9,340 tricycle injury cases seen at EDs, including 328 documented cases based on the surveillance system data. Patients with tricycle-related injuries seen at EDs were most commonly boys (63.6%), and patients were most likely to be aged 1 to 2 years (51.9%). The researchers said most of the injuries occurred at home.
Lacerations were the most common injury (28.2%), and children aged 1 year, 2 years, 6 years, and older than 7 years were most likely to be treated for these injuries. Internal organ damage was the most common injury for children aged 3 years (29.9%) and 5 years (32.9%).
The head was the most commonly injured body part (29.6%) of all injuries, while elbow fractures comprised 47.4% of all reported fractures from tricycle injuries.
The researchers said tricycles remain the No. 2 cause of toy-related mortality among children aged younger than 15 years, making tricycle safety a paramount area for further research.
“By elucidating the characteristics of tricycle-related injuries, preventive measures can be implemented to decrease the incidence of tricycle-related injuries and the frequency of ED visits,” Bandzar and colleagues wrote. – by David Costill
Disclosure: The researchers report no relevant financial disclosures.