Secondary sources of information indicate that the proportion of child deaths due to injuries is increasing in Nepal. This study aimed to describe the epidemiology of unintentional injuries in children, explore risk factors and estimate the burden faced by families and the community in the Makwanpur district. We conducted a household survey in Makwanpur, covering 3441 households. Injuries that occurred during the 12 months before the survey and required treatment or caused the child to be unable to take part in usual activities for three or more days were included. We identified 193 cases of non-fatal unintentional child injuries from 181 households and estimated an annual rate of non-fatal injuries of 24.6/1000 children; rates for boys were double (32.7/1000) that for girls (16.8/1000). The rates were higher among the children of age groups 1-4 years and 5-9 years. Falls were the most common cause of non-fatal child injuries followed by burns in preschool children and road traffic injuries were the most likely cause in adolescence. Mean period of disability following injury was 25 days. The rates and the mechanisms of injury vary by age and gender. Falls and burns are currently the most common mechanisms of injury amongst young children around rural homes.
Keywords: Nepal; child injury; community-based; household survey; unintentional injuries.