Television-related injuries in children--the British Columbia experience

J Pediatr Surg. 2012 May;47(5):991-5. doi: 10.1016/j.jpedsurg.2012.01.062.


Purpose: In Canada, mortality from falling televisions (TVs) is the 15th leading cause of childhood death owing to injury. Frequency, characteristics, and outcomes of TV childhood injuries were examined to determine any at risk populations.

Methods: All TV-related traumas at a tertiary children's hospital from 1997 to 2011 were identified using the Canadian Hospitals Injury Reporting and Prevention Program database and the hospital's trauma database. Charts of admitted patients were reviewed.

Results: Analysis of 179 injuries (10-24 per year) revealed a high frequency of injury in the home and a preponderance of head and neck injuries. Toddlers were the most commonly injured age group. Eleven admitted patients were identified; 6 were admitted to intensive care unit with significant head injuries, 2 of whom required surgery. More than half of admitted patients were First Nations or recent immigrants. The length of stay for a ward vs intensive care unit admission was 1.3 days (range, <1-2 days) compared with 7.6 days (range, <1-20 days), respectively. One child had residual deficits requiring rehabilitation, but there were no mortalities.

Conclusion: Injury severity appeared higher in patients from First Nations and recent immigrant families. Television injury would likely have been prevented by a securing device or support.

MeSH terms

  • Accidents, Home / statistics & numerical data*
  • Adolescent
  • British Columbia / epidemiology
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Craniocerebral Trauma / epidemiology
  • Craniocerebral Trauma / etiology
  • Craniocerebral Trauma / therapy
  • Emigrants and Immigrants
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Indians, North American
  • Infant
  • Injury Severity Score
  • Length of Stay / statistics & numerical data
  • Male
  • Neck Injuries / epidemiology
  • Neck Injuries / etiology
  • Neck Injuries / therapy
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Television*
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Wounds and Injuries / epidemiology
  • Wounds and Injuries / etiology*
  • Wounds and Injuries / therapy
  • Young Adult