Paediatric treadmill friction injuries

J Paediatr Child Health. 2009 May;45(5):310-2. doi: 10.1111/j.1440-1754.2008.01329.x. Epub 2008 Jun 12.


Aim: The aim of this study was to report on the severity and incidence of children injured by treadmills and to promote the implementation of safety standards.

Method: This retrospective review of children with treadmill friction injuries was conducted in a single tertiary-level burns centre in Australia between January 1997 and June 2007.

Results: The study revealed 37 children who sustained paediatric treadmill friction injuries. This was a presentation of 1% of all burns. Thirty-three (90%) of the injuries occurred in the last 3.5 years (January 2004 to June 2007). The modal age was 3.2 years. Thirty-three (90%) injuries were either full thickness or deep partial friction burns. Eleven (30%) required split thickness skin grafts. Of those who became entrapped, 100% required skin grafting.

Conclusion: This study found that paediatric treadmill friction injuries are severe and increasing in incidence. Australian standards should be developed, implemented and mandated to reduce this preventable and severe injury.

MeSH terms

  • Accidents, Home*
  • Adolescent
  • Burns / epidemiology
  • Burns / etiology*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Equipment Design / standards
  • Equipment Safety / standards
  • Female
  • Friction
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Queensland / epidemiology
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sports Equipment*