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Am J Prev Med. 2007 May;32(5):413-8.

Ladder-related injuries treated in emergency departments in the United States, 1990-2005.

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1
Center for Injury Research and Policy, Columbus Children's Research Institute, Columbus Children's Hospital, The Ohio State University College of Medicine, Columbus, Ohio 43205, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Ladder use is involved in many occupational and non-occupational activities. Falls from ladders can result in serious injury and affect people of all ages. The purpose of this study was to comprehensively examine nonfatal ladder-related injuries on a national level.

METHODS:

Using the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System (NEISS) database, cases of nonfatal ladder-related injuries treated in U.S. emergency departments (EDs) from 1990 through 2005 were selected using NEISS ladder product codes. Analysis was conducted from June 2006 to August 2006.

RESULTS:

An estimated 2,177,888 (95% confidence interval [CI]=1,885,311-2,470,466) individuals ranging in age from 1 month to 101 years were treated in U.S. EDs for ladder-related injuries during the 16-year study period, yielding an average of 136,118 cases annually, an average of 49.5 per 100,000 people. Males predominated in ladder-related injuries (76.5%, 95% CI=75.8-77.2). Fractures were the most common type of injury (31.5%, 95% CI=30.5-32.6). The body parts most frequently injured were the legs and feet (30.4%, 95% CI=29.5-31.2). Nearly 10% of injuries resulted in hospitalization (8.5%, 95% CI=7.4-9.6) or transfer to another hospital (1.4%, 95% CI=1.1-1.8), approximately twice that of consumer product-related injuries overall. The number of ladder-related injuries increased by more than 50% from 1990 to 2005. Ladder-related injuries per 100,000 people rose almost 27% during the 16-year study period. Of the cases for which locale of injury was recorded, 97.3% occurred in non-occupational settings, such as homes and farms.

CONCLUSIONS:

Given the 50% increase in ladder-related injuries during the study period, the relatively high likelihood of hospital admission, and the predominance of injuries in non-occupational settings, increased efforts are needed to prevent ladder-related injuries.

PMID:
17478268
DOI:
10.1016/j.amepre.2007.01.012
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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