You don't need to be signed in to read BMJ Blogs, but you can register here to receive updates about other BMJ products and services via our site.

Offbeat

Minimising dance injury through changing dance floors

25 Jun, 15 | by Bridie Scott-Parker

As someone who has appreciated many dance performances (primarily as I have absolutely NO dancing ability or talent in any single speck of my body!), and as an injury prevention researcher and advocate, my interest was piqued by an article authored by Hopper, Alderson, Elliott, & Ackland recently published in the Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport. Having been made for martial arts instead of dancing, I can still recall as a teen the difference flooring can make when you ‘land hard’ – bouts on a tatami were much preferred to bouts in a gymnasium with wood floors (too hard) or with gymnastic mats (too soft). Shin splints already irritated by running hurdles and leaping triple jump were further aggravated by both types of floors. Similarly, Hopper and colleagues note that dance floors have the capacity to contribute to – or prevent – ankle injuries such as ankle tendinopathies and sprains. In their examination of ankle joint mechanics, 14 dancers performed drop landings on five different floors. They note that “Considering the large mechanical demand required to stabilize the ankle joint during landings, floor properties that can absorb landing energy have the potential to reduce ankle joint loads.” Given that nearly 30 years later my shin splints can be aggravated simply by playing a game of basketball with my husband and children (I have decided that it is not simply due to ageing!), it is important to prevent injury wherever possible. Minimising injury is the next best step, although I really don’t think I can blame my shin splints for my non-dancing career path. Thankfully my career does not depend on my lower legs!

More background on our blogging team

19 Jun, 15 | by Bridie Scott-Parker

Blog 3: So today I wanted to share some more background on our blogging team. As an applied social psychologist, I find this information very interesting indeed!

What excites you about being part of the Injury Prevention social media editorial team?  

Sheree Bekker: The invaluable conversation that has sprung up around scholarly work through the collaborative power of social media and blogs inspires me to no end. I tend to find more relevant scholarly content through Twitter than through traditional platforms, and Injury Prevention has played a big part in that. As researchers, I believe that we should own our voice on social media, and constructively add value to this conversation.

David Bui: Through my studies in medical school I have seen the costs of injuries to society and individuals worldwide.  This is a great opportunity to harness the underutilised power of Social Media in health promotion and Injury Prevention, across multiple disciplines and multiple borders.

Angy El-Khatib: Being a part of the Injury Prevention social media editorial team is a great opportunity personally and collectively. By being a part of the social media editorial team, I am able to stay up to date on various topics within the realm of Injury Prevention while acquiring different perspectives from individuals from different backgrounds, disciplines, and locations. I’m also excited to be able to potentially increase readership and engage readers to create a conversation around the latest Injury Prevention research and ideas.

Klara Johansson: I am very interested to explore ways to share and disseminate knowledge and research results, outside the “old-school”, regular channels. I look forward to learning from my new co-editors, who all seem to be great communicators.

Joseph Magoola: The opportunity to work and collaborate with a variety of scholars on the injury prevention platform is nothing short of exciting. It also excites and inspires me to have an opportunity to represent Africa since low and medium income countries bear the brunt of the injury burden.

Julian Santaella-Tenorio: It is really exciting to be part of this team and to have a space to communicate and express ideas on ways to improve injury prevention, and to discuss about new studies and topics relevant to this field. I am very motivated to learn more and continue growing as a researcher as I walk through this experience.

What are you passionate about?

Sheree Bekker: Intersectional issues drive my life’s work, and my aim is that my research is, and always will be, an extension of that.

David Bui: Passionate about bringing people and ideas together.

Angy El-Khatib: I am passionate about translating scientific evidence and research into public health action. My goal is to improve the health and wellbeing of myself as well as my community. Outside of my work, I am passionate about health, fitness, and wellness.

Klara Johansson: Open discussions and innovative research in collaborative teams with high scientific ambition + high levels of tolerance and kindness; I also enjoy making difficult subjects understandable to students and the general population. Passions on my free time: nature, gardening, books, movies, writing fiction, playing music (clarinet, harmonium, piano, accordion).

Joseph Magoola: Writing on my social media accounts (facebook, twitter and my blog) as a way of reaching out to the masses. I am also interested travelling a lot, especially by road and as such, ensuring road safety is part and parcel of my aims to contribute towards reducing the carnage of our roads.

Julian Santaella-Tenorio: I am passionate about things that can make people have a better, healthier and happier life. I am inspired by ideas challenging previous knowledge, creative thinking finding answers from different angles, and the power of multidisciplinary groups. That is why I am passionate about public health research.

 

I hope you are looking forward to hearing from our bloggers, starting next month!

More background on our new blogging team

18 Jun, 15 | by Bridie Scott-Parker

Today I will share more about our blogging team members.

Blog 2: Explain your injury prevention research and interests.

Sheree Bekker: My research investigates safety promotion and injury prevention policy and practice within community sport in Australia. I have a particular interest in dissemination and social marketing. The overall purpose of my research is to allow people to be safe, as well as feel safe, whilst participating in sport or physical activity.

David Bui: Undertaking a number of different projects currently; my injury prevention research focuses on Hip fracture and Falls Prevention research, working with Neuroscience Research Australia. I am also looking into Social Media and its utility in healthcare and civilian settings, and I believe that it represents a powerful new medium in health promotion and injury prevention.

Angy El-Khatib: I am interested in integrating public health approaches with athletic training practice. Athletic training has traditionally focused on the individual but may be able to maximize the effectiveness of prevention efforts by using population-level approaches to improve health and wellness.

Klara Johansson: I am not currently doing research on injury/safety. But I am interested in social difference in injury risk – and also how perceived risk of injuries affects people’s daily lives, mobility, fears and physical activity; and how perceived and real injury risks interrelate with each other and with gender and socioeconomics. Main focus on adolescent safety; real and perceived. Also interested in open data and availability/accessibility of injury statistics globally.

Joseph Magoola: My research interests center around prevention of injury, especially through generation of data for evidence-based decision making and policy action. I am also interested in the use of media to disseminate research findings and for advocacy.

Julian Santaella-Tenorio: At the moment I conduct research on policy evaluation, specifically on policies that impact injury-related outcomes. I am interested in looking at substance use policies and firearm-related legislation and their effects on the health of populations.

Tomorrow: Learn about their passions!

Self-report versus observation

14 Jun, 15 | by Bridie Scott-Parker

For various reasons ranging from cost to a lack of alternatives, self-report is a common data collection method. However, anyone who has used a self-report data collection method would be well aware of the limitations of this method. Limitations primarily focus on the accuracy of responses, and can include such considerations as an intentional reporting bias (e.g., the participant wants to be seen in a positive light), and an unintentional reporting bias (e.g., the participant simply forgot that they had engaged in the targeted behaviour). I myself have used self-report methodology in a number of different research projects, therefore I am always interested in studies which investigate the validity of self-report measures by comparing the findings with other methodologies.

One recent study compared self-report findings with the findings from home-based observations: Osborne, Shibl, Cameron, Kendrick, Lyons, Spinks, Sipe, and McClure report that in some instances, the self-report responses were 100% in agreement with some of the observations held in the homes of 32 families, while in general the Authors concluded that self-report methodologies can confidently be used in instances where observation may not be feasible. The Authors note that knowing that a home visit would be occurring may have encouraged participants to more accurately report items in the self-administered survey; however, interestingly the Authors also noted that over-reporting of safe practice was demonstrated in approximately half of the items, while under-reporting occurred for one-third of items, suggesting that self-report biases are a complex phenomenon indeed.

Choosing a data collection method can require consideration of multiple factors including strengths and limitations associated with each approach, and validation studies can help us understand the potential magnitude of some of these strengths and limitations.

Friday 29 May in Australia is Fatality Free Friday

28 May, 15 | by Bridie Scott-Parker

Tomorrow, Friday 29 May, is Fatality Free Friday down under. As noted on the website,

Road safety is a complex issue but we believe that if drivers consciously think about road safety and safe driving for just one Friday in the year, that day’s toll – statistically about 5.3 deaths – could be reduced to zero.

That’s our aim. Not a single road death in Australia for just one day. Just one Fatality Free Friday.

We believe that if drivers are asked to actively concentrate on road safety and safe driving for just one day in the year, they’ll drive safer for the next few days too and, over time, change their outlook completely, consciously thinking about safety each and every day they get behind the wheel.

Various events have been underway throughout Australia this week, promoting Fatality Free Friday tomorrow. I am delighted to be coordinating the Fatality Free Friday event for the Sunshine Coast region at the University of the Sunshine Coast, and I look forward to welcoming road safety partners Transport and Main Roads, Queensland Police, the Sunshine Coast Council, Maurice Blackburn Lawyers, and Rotary, as we engage with our community so that we may all be safer on the roads.

Visitors will have the opportunity to take the pledge to be safer drivers, signing an inflatable car; learn firsthand vehicle features which can help prevent a crash, and protect you in the event of a crash, from vehicle inspectors; engage with police officers who will be attending with a police vehicle and a police motorbike; access a breadth of road safety resources; see and hear the wake of sadness which follows a crash from a display of thongs representing Sunshine Coast community members killed in road crashes over the past five years and from stories shared by the remaining family members; and learn about efforts being taken to improve young driver road safety in particular by community groups like Rotary and a researcher (me!).

I urge everyone, everywhere, to make every day a Fatality Free Friday for all road users.

Eyeglass injuries

18 May, 15 | by Bridie Scott-Parker

I had a delightful experience a couple of years ago, during which a young man (he looked all of 13 years old, but he did have a degree hanging on his office wall…….) told me that “now I have reached THAT age I need to wear glasses”. I don’t think he picked up on my death-glare, and thank goodness I don’t have lasers for eyes or he would have disappeared in a flash! FYI I will never reach THAT age, and I wanted to ring his mother and tell her that her son was very rude indeed! I had worn glasses for many years while working on my computer, but the unbearable headache meant that I would cave and wear a different set of glasses (yay, two prescriptions) all of the time. My teens both wear glasses all the time as they have done so for most of their lives, and, like them, they think it means that I am now blind without them. I catch them out doing all sorts of shenanigans when my glasses are off and they think they are safe: to their disappointment I have explained that I can see perfectly well without my glasses, I just have a horribly persistent headache if I don’t wear them all the time. The good news is that they do cover the bags under my eyes, so it’s not all bad : )

So, that is a long-winded background to an interesting review article I came across the other day, and it struck a chord with me as a glasses-wearer. Hoskin, Philip, Dain and Mackey conducted a review of the ocular trauma associated with wearing glasses, identifying a range of risk factors such as playing sports whilst wearing glasses. Their article published this month in the Clinical and Experimental Optometry Journal was an interesting read for me, particularly as I have found my glasses have protected me from injury.

Some background is probably needed here also…. I am known as an injury-prone person, and my eyes have proven just as vulnerable as the rest of my body. For example, I remember many a tumble on the trampoline as a child, and me crying inwardly (I had to show off in front of my brothers) that my knee always managed to find – and smash –  my eye socket. Fast forward to the days of endless-nappy-washing, and I am yet to meet another person who had a gum leaf slice the surface of their eye open while they were pegging the washing on the clothesline. Eye drops, impersonating a pirate for a couple of days, and a great excuse for not pegging out the washing any time soon. I am also pretty sure that eye-slashing gum leaves are not in any tourist brochures! My glasses have been protective, as they may have been that gusty day, such as preventing my whippet from giving me a black eye with the top of his head as he galloped around our acreage (I did end up with a glasses-shaped bruise around my eye and on my nose, however), and many a branch has scraped against the outside of the lens (better there than in my eye!). I have also had to scrape paint off their outer edge, suggesting I am not very talented with a roller. Having said that, I did have to be treated for an eye infection earlier this year after the sprinkler on our recycled water hose burst, sending a shower of recycled water (code: yucky water from our dishwasher, showers, and sinks) all over me, including the inside surface of my glasses and INSIDE my eye. Short of wearing goggles, though, I don’t think glasses would have helped prevent this latest injury.

Can anyone beat my gum-leaf eye injury?

 

 

Injury prevention and Indigenous Australians

11 Apr, 15 | by Bridie Scott-Parker

Yesterday I came across a report which estimated the fatal burden of disease and injury for Indigenous Australians. Included were estimates of the magnitude of the fatal burden ‘gap’ between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians.

The Burden of Disease Study: Fatal burden of disease in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people 2010 report includes fatal burden calculations in terms of years of life lost (YLL). Noteworthy findings include

Injuries and cardiovascular diseases contributed the most fatal burden for Indigenous Australians (22% and 21% respectively), followed by cancer (17%), infant and congenital conditions (10%), gastrointestinal diseases (6%) and endocrine disorders (which includes diabetes) (5%). These disease groups accounted for 82% of all Indigenous YLL in 2010.

Deaths in infants contributed the most to Indigenous YLL. The fatal burden in Indigenous infants was largely due to infant and congenital conditions, which includes causes such as pre-term birth complications, birth trauma and congenital defects.

‘Injuries were the leading cause of fatal burden among Indigenous persons aged 1- 34, after which cardiovascular diseases and cancer were most prominent,’ said Australian Institute of Health and Welfare spokesperson Dr Fadwa Al-Yaman.

YLL rates for injuries and cardiovascular diseases were almost 3 times as high in the Indigenous population.

Clearly we need to reduce the injury-related burden for all persons, and for indigenous persons in particular. It is important that we use this information to more forward to achieve that outcome – but, just how do we do this? What are the next steps? How do we start the ball rolling, and then maintain its momentum? I would argue that this is the greatest challenge facing injury prevention researchers and practitioners around the world.

World Health Day 2015

7 Apr, 15 | by Bridie Scott-Parker

In case you didn’t know, today, the 7th of April, is World Health Day 2015. As can be read on the World Health Organization website, WHO hopes to highlight

the challenges and opportunities associated with food safety under the slogan “From farm to plate, make food safe.”

“Food production has been industrialized and its trade and distribution have been globalized,” says WHO Director-General Dr Margaret Chan. “These changes introduce multiple new opportunities for food to become contaminated with harmful bacteria, viruses, parasites, or chemicals.”

Dr Chan adds: “A local food safety problem can rapidly become an international emergency. Investigation of an outbreak of foodborne disease is vastly more complicated when a single plate or package of food contains ingredients from multiple countries.”

My husband experienced first hand the consequences of poor food handling practices, experiencing severe gastrointestinal upset which started showing itself half way through a 16-hour cross-Pacific flight. The extremely unpleasant side-effects lasted for several days, and he will not be eating airport lounge fast-food any time soon!

I myself had a number of blood tests earlier this year after persistent ill health – thankfully I returned negative results, unlike other Australians who similarly had eaten contaminated berries imported from overseas. This latest scare has prompted a call for clearer packaging, and improved safety standards in Australia and overseas.

Our immediate experiences cannot compare with those of individuals who have lost their lives due to foodborne illnesses, however. The WHO has released its preliminary findings regarding the global burden of foodborne diseases, with additional findings expected later this year. I look forward to seeing further results in this important injury prevention domain.

 

 

Drowning in injury prevention

6 Apr, 15 | by Bridie Scott-Parker

Living in the Sunshine State, water safety has always been important to our family. I remember learning how to rescue someone, and how to swim safely out of an ocean rip, as a young child. I grew up in a farming community, and my brothers and I always knew if we went near the dam we would be in for it. I have also seen how resuscitation after drowning may not always the best option.

Given it is school holidays, and given how popular our state is at this time of year, unfortunately we have seen some near misses – thank goodness they reached these struggling swimmers in time. The difference between drowning and surviving can be just seconds.

Children are particularly vulnerable – during the last couple of weeks, a 15-month old drowned in the family pool; a four-year old boy drowned in the neighbour’s pool; a two-year-old boy drowned in the family dam…. figures showed five drownings in pools, seven in dams and two in waterways among children under eight since July 2014.

As an injury prevention researcher I firmly believe in preventing drownings and near-miss drownings is the best course of action we can take, and any research findings which help us take a holistic approach to preventing drownings spark my interest. In November 2014, the World Health Organization released its first Global report on drowning: preventing a leading killer. with the World Conference on Drowning Prevention to be held in Malaysia in November. The April edition of Injury Prevention features a paper by Karimi, Beiki, and Mohammadi, highlighting the increased drowning risk for boys with a foreign background; an article by Tian, Shaw, Zack, Kobau, Dyckstra, and Covington in the the March edition of Epilepsy & Behavior highlighting the increased risk of death due to drowning for children and young adults with epilepsy; and the February edition of PLoS One featuring an article by Wallis, Watt, Franklin, Nixon, and Kimble highlighting the considerable burden of drowning and near-drowning among children aged 0-19 years in Queensland.

Clearly we have much progress to make, and publishing research findings such as these are vital to prevent water-related deaths in persons of all ages.

 

 

 

Special online issue of Injury Prevention

25 Mar, 15 | by Barry Pless

In a recent email, the editor of Injury Prevention, Brian Johnston, announced that in recognition of the Journal’s 20th Anniversary a special online issue was available. This features “some of the best papers in global injury prevention” that ordinarily would have been presented at the Safety 2014: the World Conference on Injury Prevention and Safety Promotion. Unfortunately, the Conference, scheduled to convene in Atlanta last year, was cancelled for various reasons known only to a few. As Brian notes, despite what some have written about the value of such conferences, these biennial meetings provide an excellent “opportunity for members of our disparate community to meet one another and share ideas, often informally. Apart from Brian’s editorial, the issue includes an assessment by WHO’s injury leader, Etienne Krug of the state of the discipline from a world-wide perspective. Please note that the content of the special issue will only be free to read online through the end of April.

 

To make life simpler for our readers, here is a list of the contents:

 

Editorials

 Safety 2014: global highlights in injury prevention B D Johnston

 Next steps to advance injury and violence prevention EGKrug

Original articles

Costs of traffic injuries M Kruse

Rates of intentionally caused and road crash deaths of US citizens abroad M K Sherry, M Mossallam, M Mulligan, A A Hyder, D Bishai

Bus stops and pedestrian–motor vehicle collisions in Lima, Peru: a matched case–control study
D A Quistberg, T D Koepsell, B D Johnston, L N Boyle, J J Miranda, B E Ebel

The association of graduated driver licensing with miles driven and fatal crash rates per miles driven among adolescents M Zhu, P Cummings, S Zhao, JHCoben,GSSmith

Official blame for drivers with very low blood alcohol content: there is no safe combination of drinking and driving D P Phillips, A L R Sousa, R T Moshfegh

Extending the value of police crash reports for traffic safety research: collecting supplemental data via surveys of drivers D R Durbin, R K Myers, A E Curry, M R Zonfrillo, K B Arbogast

Unintentional drowning mortality, by age and body of water: an analysis of 60 countries C-Y Lin, Y-F Wang, T-H Lu, I Kawach

Children reporting rescuing other children drowning in rural Bangladesh: a descriptive study T S Mecrow, A Rahman, M Linnan, J Scarr, S R Mashreky, A Talab, AKMFRahman

Socioeconomic and disability consequences of injuries in the Sudan: a community-based survey in Khartoum State S E Tayeb, S Abdalla, I Heuch, G V den Bergh

Supervision and risk of unintentional injury in young children P G Schnitzer, M D Dowd, R L Kruse,
B A Morrongiello

Incidence, characteristics and risk factors for household and neighbourhood injury among young children in semiurban Ghana: a population-based household survey A Gyedu, E K Nakua, E Otupiri, C Mock, P Donkor, B Ebel

Risk of fatal unintentional injuries in children by migration status: a nationwide cohort study with 46 years’ follow-up N Karimi, O Beiki, R Mohammadi

Occupational noise exposure and noise-induced hearing loss are associated with work-related injuries leading to admission to hospital S-A Girard, T Leroux, M Courteau, M Picard, F Turcotte, O Richer

Deaths due to injury, including violence among married Nepali women of childbearing age: a qualitative analysis of verbal autopsy narratives K T Houston, P J Surkan, J Katz, K P West Jr, S C LeClerq, P Christian, L Wu, SMDali,SKKhatry

Sexual violence experienced by male and female Chinese college students in Guangzhou C Wang,
X Dong, J Yang, M Ramirez, G Chi, C Peek-Asa, S Wang

Brief reports

The implications of the relative risk for road mortality on road safety programmes in Qatar R J Consunji,
R R Peralta, H Al-Thani, R Latifi

Seatbelt and child-restraint use in Kazakhstan: attitudes and behaviours of medical university students
Z S Nugmanova, G Ussatayeva, L-A McNutt

Are national injury prevention and research efforts matching the distribution of injuries across sectors? H Jaldell, L Ryen, B Sund, R Andersson

Firearms and suicide in US cities M Miller, M Warren, D Hemenway, D Azrael

Methodology

How well do principal diagnosis classifications predict disability 12 months postinjury? B J Gabbe,
P M Simpson, R A Lyons, S Polinder, F P Rivara, S Ameratunga, S Derrett, J Haagsma, J E Harrison

Counting injury deaths: a comparison of two definitions and two countries T-H Lu, A Hsiao, P-C Chang,
Y-C Chao, C-C Hsu, H-C Peng, L-H Chen, I Kawachi

Assessing the accuracy of the International Classification of Diseases codes to identify abusive head trauma:
a feasibility study R P Berger, S Parks, J Fromkin, P Rubin, P J Pecora

Systematic reviews

An international review of the frequency of single-bicycle crashes (SBCs) and their relation to bicycle modal share P Schepers, N Agerholm, E Amoros, R Benington, T Bjørnskau, S Dhondt, B de Geus, C Hagemeister, BPYLoo,ANiska

Inequalities in unintentional injuries between indigenous and non-indigenous children: a systematic review
H Möller, K Falster, R Ivers, L Jorm

 

Injury Prevention blog

Injury Prevention

News, notes and discussion of topics relevant to injury prevention science and practice. Visit Site



Creative Comms logo

Latest from Injury Prevention

Latest from Injury Prevention