South Nassau Communities Hospital Provides Tips to Reduce Pediatric Injuries Related to Falling TVs

According to the study, falling TVs accounted for 12,300 injuries among children under age 18 in 2011, a 125% increase from the number recorded in 1990.

Oceanside, NY, September 15, 2013 --( A recent study published in the August 2013 issue of Pediatrics found that more than 17,000 children are treated in U.S. emergency departments each year for a TV-related injury, equaling one child every 30 minutes. The study, “Television-Related Injuries to Children in the United States, 1990-2011,” was led by senior author Gary Smith, MD, president of the Child Injury Prevention Alliance.

According to the study, falling TVs accounted for 12,300 injuries among children under age 18 in 2011, a 125% increase from the number recorded in 1990. Previous research on this topic has shown that pediatric injuries stemming from televisions tipping over have increased, with children ages 4 and younger at highest risk for injury.

“A majority of such injuries is generally caused by TV sets falling off a dresser, armoire, entertainment center or TV stand,” said Clara E. Mayoral, MD, Chair of the Department of Pediatrics at South Nassau Communities Hospital.

The study categorized televisions as being 27 inches and larger or 26 inches and smaller.

Injury codes included laceration, contusion, soft tissue injury, fracture, strain, and other -- which included shocks, burns, dislocations, and dental injuries. The average patient age was 4.7, and children younger than 5 represented 64.3% of injured patients, while children ages 5 to 10 represented 24.3% and those ages 11 to 17 made up 11.4% of injuries. Nearly 61% of the children injured were male.

The study reported that the most common injuries were to the head and neck (63.3%), followed by the lower extremities (21.5%). Head and neck injuries were associated with a 36% increased likelihood of hospital admission compared with other areas of bodily injury. Children younger than 5 years were 36% more likely to receive a head or neck injury.

To reduce the risk of an injury caused by a falling TV, Dr. Mayoral offers the following tips:

- Keep your TV on low furniture and as far to the back as possible;

- Be sure the piece of furniture you put the TV on is big enough to hold it;

- Make sure furniture is stable on its own; if necessary take extra precautions, such as using anchors, angle braces or straps to anchor furniture to the floor or secure it to the wall;

- If you have a flat-screen TV, make sure it is attached securely to the wall;

- Never allow children to climb or lie on furniture with a television on it;

- Do not place toys or other items on top of the TV or furniture.

South Nassau Communities Hospital is one of the region’s largest hospitals, with 435 beds, more than 900 physicians and 3,000 employees. Located in Oceanside, NY, the hospital is an acute-care, not-for-profit teaching hospital that provides state-of-the-art care in cardiac, oncologic, orthopedic, bariatric, pain management, mental health and emergency services. In addition to its extensive outpatient specialty centers, South Nassau provides emergency and elective angioplasty and is the only hospital on Long Island with the Novalis Tx™ and Gamma Knife® Perfexion radiosurgery technologies. South Nassau is a designated Stroke Center by the New York State Department of Health and Comprehensive Community Cancer Center by the American College of Surgeons and is recognized as a Bariatric Surgery Center of Excellence by the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery.
South Nassau Communities Hospital
Damian J. Becker