Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Protective eyewear reduces eye, head, and facial injuries, field hockey study shows

Date:
November 12, 2012
Source:
Hasbro Children's Hospital
Summary:
A new national U.S. study has found that high school field hockey players competing in states with mandated protective eyewear have significantly lower rates of head, eye, and facial injuries when compared to players who compete in states without protective eyewear mandates.

A new study conducted by researchers at Hasbro Children's Hospital, the Center for Injury Research and Policy of The Research Institute at Nationwide Children's Hospital, Fairfax (VA) County Public Schools, and Boston Children's Hospital has found that high school field hockey players competing in states with mandated protective eyewear have significantly lower rates of head, eye, and facial injuries when compared to players who compete in states without protective eyewear mandates.

Each academic year, an estimated 63,000 girls participate in high school-sanctioned field hockey in the United States. Head, facial, and eye injuries are common among field hockey players, and, occasionally, are catastrophic. In recent years, there has been ongoing debate among coaches, players, parents, rules committees, and medical professionals regarding the efficacy of protective eyewear in preventing these injuries.

The study, currently online and appearing in the December 2012 print issue of Pediatrics, examined injuries among high school field hockey players 14-18 years of age during the 2009-10 and 2010-11 scholastic seasons, just prior to the national mandate by the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) requiring the use of protective eyewear for all high school field hockey players which went into effect during the 2011-12 season.

Researchers found that the rates of all head and face injuries (including eye injuries and concussion) were significantly higher in states with no protective eyewear mandate compared to states with protective eyewear mandates. Players from states with no protective eyewear mandate were more than five times more likely to sustain an eye injury than players from states with mandated protective eyewear. In addition, a larger percentage of injuries sustained by athletes from states with no protective eyewear mandate required more than 10 days to return to activity (32 percent) compared to athletes from states with mandated protective eyewear (17 percent).

"This study adds to an accumulating body of evidence, most recently demonstrated in high school women's lacrosse, that mandated protective eyewear effectively and significantly reduces the rates of head and facial injuries in contact and collision sports," said Peter Kriz, M.D., the study's principal investigator, co-author, and sports medicine physician at Hasbro Children's Hospital. "We now have a large, national study that provides evidence that protective eyewear is indeed effective in reducing head and facial injuries, including eye and orbital injuries, which validates the decisions of rules committees such as the NFHS to mandate protective eyewear use in high school field hockey and other sports."

The study showed that injuries to the eye orbits, eye globes (eyeball), eyebrows, and eyelids were virtually eliminated in the athletes competing in states that mandated protective eyewear.

"As medical professionals who work closely with athletes and coaches, and who have children ourselves who play contact and collision sports, we are very familiar, and even respectful, of the issues of culture and tradition in sport. Other sports, such as ice hockey and lacrosse, have gone through painstaking processes of balancing safety issues with sport culture and tradition with the goal of providing a safe playing environment without jeopardizing the intrinsic purity and integrity of the game," stated Kriz.

Kriz added, "Here in the Northeast, children learn to play ice hockey with a full facemask/cage from a young age. Many of these kids go on to play field hockey in middle and high school. They've adopted this protection at a young age, and they don't miss a beat when transitioning to other sports requiring facial protection. Early adoption, rather than integrating mandated protection at a later age, particularly in the setting of this study's results, appears to be the key. I think this will play out in other sports facing similar decisions regarding facial protection, such as baseball and softball."

The researchers also found that concussion rates were similar for athletes from states with mandated protective eyewear and athletes from states with no protective eyewear mandate, and that addition of protective eyewear did not result in more player-player contact injuries.

"Some people think that athletes become more aggressive when they wear additional protective equipment because they feel 'safer.' Critics fear that this increased aggression will actually lead to more injuries," said study co-author, Dawn Comstock, Ph.D., principal investigator in the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children's Hospital. "Our study challenges this perception. We found no increase in the rate of concussions or player-to-player contact injuries in states that mandated protective eyewear."

Data for this study were collected from the National High School Sports-Related Injury Surveillance System, High School RIO™ (Reporting Information Online) and from Fairfax County (VA) Public Schools Athletic Training Program. The study was funded in part by Prevent Blindness America, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Hasbro Children's Hospital. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. P. K. Kriz, R. D. Comstock, R. D. Zurakowski, J. L. Almquist, C. L. Collins, P. A. d'Hemecourt. Effectiveness of Protective Eyewear in Reducing Eye Injuries Among High School Field Hockey Players. Pediatrics, 2012; DOI: 10.1542/peds.2012-1492

Cite This Page:

Hasbro Children's Hospital. "Protective eyewear reduces eye, head, and facial injuries, field hockey study shows." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 12 November 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121112135613.htm>.
Hasbro Children's Hospital. (2012, November 12). Protective eyewear reduces eye, head, and facial injuries, field hockey study shows. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 2, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121112135613.htm
Hasbro Children's Hospital. "Protective eyewear reduces eye, head, and facial injuries, field hockey study shows." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121112135613.htm (accessed October 2, 2014).

Share This



More Science & Society News

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Japan Looks To Faster Future As Bullet Train Turns 50

Japan Looks To Faster Future As Bullet Train Turns 50

Newsy (Oct. 1, 2014) Japan's bullet train turns 50 Wednesday. Here's a look at how it's changed over half a century — and the changes it's inspired globally. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
US Police Put Body Cameras to the Test

US Police Put Body Cameras to the Test

AFP (Oct. 1, 2014) Police body cameras are gradually being rolled out across the US, with interest surging after the fatal police shooting in August of an unarmed black teenager. Duration: 02:18 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Cases Keep Coming for Monrovia's Island Hospital

Ebola Cases Keep Coming for Monrovia's Island Hospital

AFP (Oct. 1, 2014) A look inside Monrovia's Island Hospital, a key treatment centre in the fight against Ebola in Liberia's capital city. Duration: 00:34 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
WH: We Can Stop Spread of Ebola in Its Tracks

WH: We Can Stop Spread of Ebola in Its Tracks

AP (Oct. 1, 2014) White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest reaffirmed the administration's confidence in the CDC's ability to keep the Ebola virus from spreading. (Oct. 1) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Science & Society

Business & Industry

Education & Learning

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins