Send to

Choose Destination
Pediatrics. 2016 Oct;138(4). pii: e20160346. Epub 2016 Sep 12.

Soccer-Related Injuries Treated in Emergency Departments: 1990-2014.

Author information

Center for Injury Research and Policy, The Research Institute at Nationwide Children's Hospital, Columbus, Ohio; and.
Center for Injury Research and Policy, The Research Institute at Nationwide Children's Hospital, Columbus, Ohio; and
The Ohio State University College of Medicine, Department of Pediatrics, Columbus, Ohio.



To investigate the epidemiology of youth soccer-related injuries treated in emergency departments in the United States.


A retrospective analysis was conducted of soccer-related injuries among children 7 through 17 years of age from 1990 through 2014 with data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System. Injury rates were calculated from soccer participation data.


An estimated 2 995 765 (95% confidence interval [CI], 2 309 112-3 682 418) children 7 through 17 years old were treated in US emergency departments for soccer-related injuries during the 25-year study period, averaging 119 831 (95% CI, 92 364-147 297) annually. The annual injury rate per 10 000 soccer participants increased significantly, by 111.4%, from 1990 to 2014. Patients 12 to 17 years old accounted for 72.7% of injuries, 55.5% of patients were male, and most injuries occurred in a place of sport or recreation (68.5%) or school (25.7%). Struck by (38.5%) and fell (28.7%) were the leading mechanisms of injury. Injuries most commonly were diagnosed as sprain or strain (34.6%), fracture (23.2%), and soft tissue injury (21.9%), and occurred to the upper extremity (20.7%), ankle (17.8%), and head or neck (17.7%). Concussions or other closed head injuries accounted for 7.3% of the injuries, but the annual rate of concussions/closed head injuries per 10 000 participants increased significantly, by 1595.6%, from 1990 to 2014.


This study is the first to comprehensively investigate soccer-related injuries and calculate injury rates based on soccer participation data among children at the national level. The increasing number and rate of pediatric soccer-related injuries, especially soccer-related concussions/closed head injuries, underscore the need for increased efforts to prevent these injuries.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for HighWire
Loading ...
Support Center