Sledding trauma in a northeastern Ontario community

J Trauma. 1994 Nov;37(5):820-5. doi: 10.1097/00005373-199411000-00019.


Goals and objectives: To determine the incidence of sledding trauma in a northeastern Ontario community. Factors and behaviors associated with these events were also examined.

Design: Prospective case series.

Setting: Emergency departments of the Sudbury General and Memorial Hospitals.

Patients: All patients arriving at the two emergency departments in Sudbury with an injury sustained while sledding were included in the study. Physicians completed data forms on each patient. Information was validated by review of the ER records. Follow-up was completed by telephone in one to two weeks to determine residual disability.

Results: A total of 101 patients were identified with sledding-related injuries. There was a higher incidence of injuries among males (59%); the mean age of injured patients was 16 years (range, 16-46 years). Injuries occurred most frequently on weekends (51%). GT-racers were the most common device used by injured sledders (44%). Most injuries occurred on non-designated sledding hills in the community (71%). Many of the injuries were mild with a mean Injury Severity Score of 2.3 (range, 1-16). However, 7 (7%) patients required hospital admission, while 58% required follow-up by either their family physician or a specialist. Patients injured while sledding missed an average of 3.7 days of work or school.

Conclusions: Sledding injuries are uncommon emergency department problems in this community; however, serious injury and absenteeism from work or school may result. Most injuries appear to be preventable and strategies of prevention are discussed.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Athletic Injuries* / epidemiology
  • Athletic Injuries* / pathology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Ontario / epidemiology
  • Prospective Studies