Report from Denver Conference: Winter Sports Head Injuries Increase

In early October, physicians from across the country met in Denver for the annual Scientific Assembly. The assembly is a gathering of the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP). Some members presented a study with discouraging news: a majority of winter athletes like skiers and snowboarders are wearing helmets, but deaths and serious injuries from head injuries have increased over the past several years.

Mark Christensen, D.O., co-authored the study. “Skiing and snowboarding-related head injuries requiring emergency care have increased at a higher rate than all other ski and snowboard injuries, despite an increase in helmet use,” he said.

Helmet Use, Head Injuries Both Increase

The study cites two figures that demonstrate the rise in head injuries that required hospitalization for skiers and snowboarders:

  • 2004: 9,308 head injuries
  • 2010: 14,947 head injuries

That is an increase of 5,639 injuries over six years, nearly a 40 percent increase. The study claims that helmet use increased 20 percent over those years, and that 60 percent of skiers and snowboarders in the US currently wear helmets.

People most at risk of sustaining a traumatic brain injury during winter sports are males, teenagers and snowboarders, Christensen said.

We urge all winter sports enthusiasts to remember that these are all potentially dangerous activities, and you should enjoy them with a focused and sober mind.

If you know someone who sustained a traumatic brain injury, please contact our office today by calling (866) 377-3800 and scheduling a free consultation. You may have options that you were not aware of.

Metier Law Firm, LLCDenver accident lawyers

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