A recent study conducted by John Hopkins University finds that fights and falls account for the majority of eye injuries and hospitalization in the US. According to their findings, it appears that many instances of severe ocular trauma, as well as their associated costs to the healthcare system, could have been avoided.
The study focused on 47,000 patients diagnosed with ocular injury over a period of 10-years (from 2002-2011). Their findings revealed that falls were the primary cause of ocular injury, with the majority of falls in the over-60 age group. Slipping and falling was responsible for almost 3000 injuries, followed closely by falling down a staircase. Fights and brawls were the second most common cause of ocular injury, especially amongst those aged 10-59. On the contrary, in the UK, work-related injuries accounted for the most hospitalization for ocular trauma.
Overall, researchers found that the cost of treating such avoidable injuries also increased from 2002 to 2011. Although no certain reason was detected for this increase in treatment costs, lead researcher Dr Christina Prescott said it could be related to “drug prices or administrative costs.”
Either way, it is quite clear that many ocular trauma cases are preventable and we need more targeted interventions to help reduce such injuries in the future.