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Volume 104, Issue 2 (February 2005)


 
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Editorials

Thomas C. Meyer, MD
Injury prevention: Part 2
(full text PDF)

As was mentioned in the previous issue of the Journal , we received so many excellent submissions on the topic of injury prevention that we decided to dedicate two issues to it. This, the second, deals primarily with the prevention of injuries relating to recreational activities. Introducing this topic is the guest editorial from Dr Brixey et al, which makes the plea that as physicians we assist in closing the gap between the epidemiological/scientific knowledge of injury prevention and what is happening in the real world of recreation (p 19).

Commentaries

Darold A. Treffert, MD; Sidney E. Johnson, MD
Report on a Flawed “Report Card”: The Public Citizens Ranking of Medical Licensing Boards
(full text PDF)

Each year the Public Citizens Health Research Group (HRG), led by Sidney Wolfe, MD, issues a “report card” ranking physician discipline rates, state by state. And each year, newspapers run stories about the “anemic” performance of the Wisconsin Medical Examining Board, using the HRG report as their source.

Anthony G. Staresinic, PharmD
Education is not enough Equipment and legislation also needed to prevent injury
(full text PDF)

There is no better advocate for child passenger safety than a parent of a child who was involved in an automobile crash. The parental feelings of child protection can be overwhelmingly strong. I know this because my son and I were involved in a motor vehicle crash in early January.

Suzanne Brixey, MD; Ann L. Christiansen, MPH; Kelly S. Tieves, DO, MS
Injuries can be prevented
(full text PDF)

As physicians, public health advocates, and parents, we strive to promote safe environments for our children. Everyone wants to decrease the risk of unintentional injury, the leading cause of death for children under the age of 15.1 Unintentional injury is a significant burden on our children and youth and a critical issue for public health. In the United States, over 400 people die of injuries every day; at least 57 of these deaths occur among children, with almost two-thirds related to unintentional injuries.

Original Research

George W. Kindschi, MD, MS, FCAP
The Analogy of the Hive
(full text PDF)

With tongue firmly placed in cheek, I offer a comparison of the functioning of a beehive and that of a health care organization. I found the similarities striking.

Kelly S.Tieves, DO; Hongyan Yang, MS; Peter M. Layde, MD
The Epidemiology of Traumatic Brain Injury in Wisconsin, 2001
(full text PDF)

Problem: Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a leading cause of death and disability in the United States. To implement more effective injury prevention and treatment programs, it is important to identify the regional impact, causes, risk factors, and trends of TBI. This report summarizes the public health impact of TBI in Wisconsin.

Maureen Durkin, PhD, DrPH; Jane McElroy, PhD; Hui Guan, MBBS, MS; Wayne Bigelow, MS; Tom Brazelton, MD, MPH
Geographic Analysis of Traffic Injury in Wisconsin: Impact on Case Fatality of Distance to Level I/II Trauma Care
(full text PDF)

Purpose: Traffic injuries are an important public health problem in Wisconsin. This paper examines geographic variations in the incidence and case fatality of traffic injuries, and evaluates proximity to Level I/II trauma care as a predictor of case fatality.

Mary L. Sy, MD; Timothy E. Corden, MD
The Perils of Snowmobiling
(full text PDF)

Snowmobiling is a popular winter sport in Wisconsin, but it can result in serious injury and death. From 1998-2002, 1090 people in Wisconsin were hospitalized due to injuries related to snowmobiling. From 2002 to 2004, 51 snowmobile-related fatalities were reported to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. Multiple risk factors exist for snowmobile injury and death, with alcohol consumption and male gender being the 2 largest associated risks. Many of the risk factors are modifiable, and health care professionals can facilitate snowmobiling-related injury prevention.

Timothy E. Corden, MD; Neena Tripathy, MD; Sarah E. Pierce, BS; Murray L. Katcher, MD, PhD
The Role of the Health Care Professional in Bicycle Safety
(full text PDF)

Learning to ride a bicycle and enjoying the pleasures of cycling are synonymous with childhood; unfortunately, cycling does not come without risk of serious injury. Children under 15 years old account for the majority of cycling time in the United States, and on average, 1 child dies every day from a bicycle-related injury. Health care professionals can play an important role in making cycling a safe activity by encouraging and advocating for safe bicycling practices. Specific areas for physicians and health care professionals to emphasize involve the cyclist, environmental factors, and equipment factors. Helmet use by cyclists, avoidance of risk-taking, safe cycling road behavior, and proper cycling equipment fit and usage are all areas in which health care professionals can instruct families during office visits. The physician and the health care community can also be advocates for mandatory helmet legislation in order to achieve higher helmet usage rates and decreased cycling injuries. The health care professional’s role in bicycle safety is an important component in building a foundation for safe cycling.

Carley Sauter, BA; Shankuan Zhu, MD, PhD; Shane Allen, BS, MPH; Stephen Hargarten, MD, MPH; Peter M. Layde, MD, MSc
Increased Risk of Death or Disability in Unhelmeted Wisconsin Motorcyclists
(full text PDF)

Objective: The purpose of this study is to investigate the relationships among motorcycle rider helmet, alcohol use and the full spectrum of health outcomes following crashes.

Elena M. Schnake, MD; Nan M. Peterson, RN, MS; Timothy E. Corden, MD
Promoting Childhood Water Safety: The Physician’s Role
(full text PDF)

Injuries and deaths secondary to drowning are a significant issue for children. The risks associated with drowning change with a child’s age and developmental abilities. Nationally, children under the age of 4 years and male adolescents represent the pediatric groups with the highest rates of drowning. In Wisconsin, 1998-2002, preteen children were involved in drowning or near-drowning events more often than teens, with boys being involved more than 2 times as often as girls for all childhood ages assessed. The drowning gender disparity is even greater among adults. Physicians are in a position to promote water safety for their patients and the community by educating families on age-appropriate drowning-prevention methods, supporting community safety campaigns, and advocating for “best practice” drowning-prevention legislation. Although injury prevention anticipatory guidance is important for all family members, directing the message to males is particularly important. Physicians can help children enjoy the benefits of water recreation while decreasing the risk for water-associated injury.

Review Articles

Tanya Jagodzinski, MD; Gregory P. DeMuri, MD
Horse-Related Injuries in Children: A Review
(full text PDF)

Horseback riding is an increasingly popular activity among today’s youth, providing them with the opportunity to learn responsibility and respect for animals. However, it can also be associated with severe injury, of which many physicians are unaware. In 2002, there were an estimated 13,400 emergency department visits nationwide for horse-related injuries among children younger than 15 years. When using a severity score to compare it with other childhood injuries, equestrian-related injury ranked second only to pedestrians being struck by a car, and had a higher score than all terrain vehicle, bicycle, and passenger motor vehicle crash injuries.

Your Practice

Kurt G. Krumholz, CFP
Managing an IRA inheritance
(full text PDF)

The traditional individual retirement account (IRA) has been around for a number of years, and the first generation of IRA investors are now passing away. This has left many spouses and heirs with the process of managing an IRA inheritance. Unfortunately, many are making serious mistakes along the way.

Your Profession

Philip M. Farrell, MD, PhD
Much more research needed on injury prevention
(full text PDF)

Personally, I wish I knew more about injury prevention, the theme of this issue of the Wisconsin Medical Journal. Such knowledge might have helped me avoid some of the many sports-related injuries I’ve sustained in my life.

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