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July 29, 2019

Common household objects, sports linked to non-fatal traumatic brain injuries in children, study finds

Children's Health Brain Injuries
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A recent study found that more than half of all non-fatal traumatic brain injuries in children and adolescents one through 19 years old are associated with consumer products or sports and recreation.

For children ages 19 and younger, common household items like floors, stairs, and ceilings, as well as sports like soccer and basketball are commonly associated with non-fatal traumatic brain injuries, a new study has found.

The research, published in the Brain Injury journal on Monday, shows that traumatic brain injuries in children as young as infants and up to four years old were commonly linked to home furnishings and fixtures like beds, while injuries from sports and recreation, like bicycle riding and playing football, were most common among children ages 5 to 19. 

Using data from 2010 to 2013 from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System, researchers found that 72.2% of all traumatic brain injury-related emergency room visits are attributable to consumer products, despite this being the first study to link consumer products to non-fatal traumatic brain injuries, it said. 

Here are the top 10-leading products contributing to TBI in children and adolescents.

  1. Floors — 6.4%
  2. Beds — 6.1%
  3. Football — 5.7%
  4. Stairs — 4.6%
  5. Bicycles — 3.1%
  6. Basketball — 2.9%
  7. Ceilings and walls — 2.3%
  8. Chairs — 2.3%
  9. Soccer — 2.2%
  10. Tables — 2.2%

In total, sports and recreation accounted for 28.8% of all product-related non-fatal TBI and home furnishings and fixtures accounted for 17.2%. 

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention categorizes TBI as a disruption in the normal functioning of the brain due to a bump, blow, or jolt to the head or a penetrating head injury. 

Most non-fatal TBI occurrences in children involve falls, motor vehicle crashes, being struck by or against a moving or stationary object, and assault, the study reported. 

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