Aim The aim of this study was to describe trauma in children secondary to the use of wheeled recreational devices (WRDs).
Methods This study retrospectively described trauma secondary to use of WRDs sustained by children 16 years or younger over a period of 12 months at two tertiary paediatric hospitals in Brisbane, Queensland. Data were analysed from the Paediatric Trauma Registry at these two facilities. Data were also retrieved from The Commission for Children and Young People and Child Guardian to provide information regarding deaths in Queensland from the use of WRDs for the period January 2004 to September 2013. Outcome measures included age, gender, types of injuries, Injury Severity Scores, admission to Intensive Care, and length of hospital stay for all hospital admissions greater than 24 h.
Results A total number of 45 children were admitted with trauma relating to WRDs during the 12 months, representing 5.3% of all trauma admissions of greater than 24 h during this time period. Of these, 34 were male with a median age of 11.0 years (IQR = 9–13). Limbs accounted for the majority (54.5%) of injuries, with other common injuries being spine/cranial fractures (14.5%), lacerations (12.7%), internal organ injuries (9.1%), and intracranial bleeds (9.1%). There were six admissions to the Paediatric Intensive Care Unit and one death.
Conclusions WRDs contribute significantly to injuries sustained by children. A large proportion of these injuries may be preventable, suggesting that mandating the use of protective equipment in Queensland may be of great benefit.