Pediatric Trauma Society

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Pediatric Traumatic Sports-Related Injuries, 2008-2017
Stephen Strotmeyer, PhD, MPH1; Barbara A. Gaines, MD2
1University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA; 2Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, Lancaster, PA

Background: Sports-related (SR) injuries are a significant source of pediatric injury, with a small but significant proportion severe enough to warrant admission to trauma centers. We sought to evaluate trends in trauma admissions for children injured while playing sports during the past decade.

Methods: Retrospective review of a regional pediatric trauma registry using External-cause-of injury codes and mechanism of injury descriptions. Odds ratios for SR trauma admission and subsequent disability were calculated by logistic regression incorporating multiple individual demographic and hospital variables.

Results: SR trauma admissions dropped from 151/1735 (8.7%) in 2008 to 89/1581 (5.6%) in 2017. Most injuries were blunt traumas (99.6%). Nearly 1/3 (333) patients sustained a concussion. The top 3 sports leading to traumatic injury by gender are depicted table 1. Median in-hospital length of stay was one day (IQR 1-2), but nearly 7% of patients required ICU admission. Discharge was almost always home (98.8%), only (1%) were sent to rehabilitation. Risk factors for hospitalization included white race, male gender, playing football and private insurance.

Conclusions: Trauma admissions for SR injuries in children have decreased over the past decade, and, at a greater rate (50%) than the decrease in overall sports participation (8%). Patient demographics and specific sports are predictive of these admissions and should prompt targeted interventions to further reduced injuries in youth sports.

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