A study conducted at a Pennsylvania trauma center found that young competitive motocross athletes suffer life-threatening injuries despite wearing helmets and other required safety gear on the sport’s popular off-road racing courses.
The abstract, “Injuries in the Competitive Pediatric Motocross Athlete,” will be presented at the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) 2016 National Conference & Exhibition in San Francisco on October 23. The 10-year retrospective study identified 35 patients between the ages of 8 and 17 who were treated at a Level I trauma center between 2004 and 2014 after being injured while training or competing on off-road motorcycles. two-wheel road on motocross tracks sanctioned and regulated by the American Motorcycle Association. Courses typically feature steep inclines, jumps, and tight turns.
Most (85.7%) of the patients, with an average age of 14, were injured during competitions. Despite the mandatory wearing of helmets on the slopes, nearly half (48.6%) of them suffered concussions. Twenty-five patients (71.4 percent) had bone fractures or dislocations, two-thirds of which required surgery. Most had broken legs (18.8% femur, 12.5% fibula and 9.4% tibia), collarbone (12.5%) or forearm (9.4%). One child died from his injuries.
All 35 patients were wearing the required safety equipment, including a helmet, shatterproof goggles, protective pants, long-sleeved shirt and protective boots at the time of the injury, according to the summary. More than half of the injuries were related to show jumping.
Abstract author Christopher Arena said the insights gained from this study will help provide insight into what steps can potentially be taken to improve sport safety. Future improvements such as equipment design, track regulations or the allocation of appropriate medical resources will likely benefit the sport in similar ways to much-studied pediatric contact sports such as soccer or wrestling, he said. he declares.
“As a former motocross athlete, I realize the sport has the potential for serious injury,” said Arena, a third-year orthopedic resident. “Continued research into how these injuries occur and how to prevent them will hopefully improve the safety of the sport for future pediatric athletes.”
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