Deakin University

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Wrist, hand and finger injuries in Australian football: A prospective observational study of emergency department presentations

journal contribution
posted on 2023-02-13, 03:38 authored by Stephen GillStephen Gill, Lambros Anagnostelos, Julian Stella, Nicole Lowry, Kate KlootKate Kloot, Tom Reade, Tim BakerTim Baker, Georgina Hayden, Matthew Ryan, Hugh Seward, Richard PageRichard Page
OBJECTIVES: Investigate the characteristics of wrist, hand and finger (WHF) injuries in Australian footballers presenting to EDs and determine if injury profiles differed between females and males, and between children and adults. METHODS: In this prospective observational study that took place during an entire football season, patients attended 1 of 10 EDs in Victoria, Australia with a WHF injury sustained while playing Australian football. Data were extracted from patient medical records by trained researchers. Data included injury type (e.g. fracture), body part (e.g. metacarpal) and mechanism of injury. Males versus females, and children versus adults were compared using chi-squared tests or Fisher's exact tests. RESULTS: In total, 528 patients had a WHF injury, of which 105 (19.9%) were female and 308 (59.2%) were children. Fractures and sprains were the most common injury types (45.3% and 38.6%, respectively). Fingers were more often injured than wrists or hands (62.5%, 23.5% and 15.0%, respectively). Ball contact was the most common mechanism of injury (38.1% of injuries). Females were more likely than males to (i) have a sprain/strain injury, (ii) injure a finger (rather than wrist or hand) and (iii) injure themselves through ball contact. Children were more likely to injure their wrists, have a sprain/strain injury, or be injured falling to the ground. Adults were more likely to dislocate a joint or injure their hands. CONCLUSIONS: Differences in injury type, location and mechanism between females and males, and children and adults, suggest an opportunity for customised injury prevention and management strategies by sex and age.



Emergency Medicine Australasia