Surfing is a highly popular recreational sport in Australia and other parts of the world. A significant percentage of total acute injuries in surfboarding involve the head and neck, but major orbital or ocular trauma is infrequent. Ophthalmic injuries are typically due to blunt trauma from collision with the surfboard. We describe a mechanism of surfboard injury not previously described in the published literature, which involved penetration of orbital tissues by blade-like fragments of fiberglass when the surfboard outer shell broke up on impact with the surfer. The fiberglass left a trail of fibers and resin particles as it traveled through the eyelid and orbital tissues, requiring painstaking removal and debridement to minimize the long-term effects of inflammatory reactions and scarring in the orbital tissues.
In cases of surfing trauma, there should be a high index of suspicion of orbital foreign bodies if board fragmentation occurs with eyelid laceration.
Drummoyne Eye Surgical Centre, Drummoyne, NSW 2047, Australia.
Accepted December 10, 2003.
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