Background: Inflatable bouncers or moonbouncers are very popular in private and public settings and are usually perceived as very safe attractions, but are associated with frequent fractures in children. To date, there are no publications in the medical literature about these types of injuries. The purpose of this study was to show skeletal injuries related to inflatable bouncer use, describe their characteristics, and determine possible risk factors and preventive measures.
Methods: Demographic data and injury characteristics were analyzed for all patients who were treated for inflatable bouncer-associated injuries in the pediatric fracture clinic of a level I trauma center from October 2002 to March 2007.
Results: Forty-nine patients were treated for inflatable bouncer-related fractures. Children ranged in age from 1.5 to 15 years old (mean age, 7.8 years) with a male-female ratio of approximately 3:1. The most commonly injured region was the upper extremity (65.5%, n = 32). The most commonly injured area was the elbow (31%, n = 15), and the most common single diagnosis was supracondylar humerus fracture (22%, n = 11). Diaphyseal long bone fractures were found in 18% (n = 9) of the patients and nondiaphyseal in 71% (n = 35). One patient (2%) had an open fracture. Mechanisms of injury included collision of 1 person with another (67%), falling out of a bouncer onto a hard object outside the device (19%), and twisting motion to the leg (14%). There was no adult supervision in many of the incidents (43%), and the presence of different-aged children inside the jumper took place in 52% cases.
Conclusions: Inflatable bouncers can cause serious orthopaedic injuries. Children playing in the bouncer should be placed in small groups according to their size and should be closely supervised at all times.
Study design: Case series. Level IV evidence.