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Journal Article


Mehta NK, Siegel J, Cowan B, Johnson J, Hojjat H, Chung MT, Carron MA. Ann. Otol. Rhinol. Laryngol. 2021; ePub(ePub): ePub.


(Copyright © 2021, Annals Publishing)






IMPORTANCE: American football is a popular high-impact sport, leading to 2.7 million injuries in the United States annually. Recent evidence in football-related neurological damage has spurred national interest in player-safety. Football players injure their head and neck in up to 26% of total injuries. Variation in injury patterns between age groups and correlated hospitalizations for football-related head and neck injury has yet to be characterized.

OBJECTIVE: Our aim is to evaluate injury patterns among American-football related head and neck trauma.

METHODS: A retrospective cohort study of patients with football-related head and neck injury in the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System (NEISS).

RESULTS: Nearly 100ā€‰000 ED visits for football-related head and neck injuries occur annually. Males comprised 95% of patients, with a median age of 13. The head comprised 70% of injuries followed by the face (13%). The most common diagnoses were concussions (39%), internal organ injury (26%), and lacerations (11%). Pediatric patients were more likely to sustain concussions while adults experienced more lacerations (Pā€‰<ā€‰.05%). Fractures and nerve damage were rare injuries but caused a disproportionate share of hospitalizations.

CONCLUSION: Pediatric males are most likely to present for emergency care from football-related injury to the head and neck. Evaluating physicians can anticipate concussions, internal organ injury, and lacerations among presenting patients. Concussions, facial fractures, and nerve damage are injuries most likely to lead to hospitalization.

Language: en


football injuries; football trauma; head and neck; head and neck trauma; tackle-football


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