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ATV and motocross sports - high velocity toys merit caution
Date:3/10/2010

Over the years, all terrain vehicles (ATVs) and motocross motorcycles have gained popularity and marketed as toys to consumers. These high-velocity machines can weigh between 300 and 600 pounds, and run on average between 25 and 60 miles per hour, while some even reach maximum speeds of 75 miles per hour.

  • In 2008, nearly 28 percent of all ATV-related injuries were to children younger than 16. There were an estimated 135,000 injuries for riders of all ages for ATV use. A majority of ATV injuries happen from tipping, overturning or multiple riders.

Three new studies are the focus of a media briefing at the 2010 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS). Kevin G. Shea, MD, orthopaedic surgeon specializing in pediatrics will moderate this panel and he, along with other study authors will release new information on ATV and motocross trends, and highlight ways to prevent severe orthopaedic trauma from these vehicles.

"I practice in Idaho, where ATV ridership is very common," explained Dr. Shea. "These vehicles can produce significant injuries in young riders, and we care for many in our community. Nationwide, there is even a rise in amputations and death from the use of these powerful vehicles."

Trends in ATV-related Spine Injuries in Children in the U.S. 1997-2006 Jeffrey R. Sawyer, MD, chief of pediatric orthopaedic trauma at Campbell Clinic-LeBonheur Medical Center in Memphis looked at 4,483 children in the U.S. who were injured in an ATV-related accident over a period of several years. Of those children, 332 or 7.4 percent had a spine injury. This shows a 140 percent increase in children injured, and a 368 percent increase in the number of spinal injuries from 1997. Of note:

  • 76 percent of patients were male;
  • 85 percent were Caucasian ;
  • Mean age of those ATV riders was 12.9 years of age; and
  • 70 percent of all injuries were to children younger
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Contact: Lauren L. Pearson
pearson@aaos.org
847-384-4031
American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
Source:Eurekalert

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