Lawnmower injuries remain a preventable cause of serious morbidity and even mortality in children. We aimed to characterize lawnmower injuries in children and to describe reported mechanisms through a review of the literature to better understand these injuries and their prevention.
The Embase and MEDLINE databases were queried for studies pertaining to pediatric lawnmower injuries, along with manual searching of references of included studies and Google Scholar searches. Reviews and case reports were excluded. Studies relating to lawnmower injuries were broadly included to ensure capture of the relevant studies. Studies with both adult and pediatric data were included if pediatric data were granular and available for separate analysis.
Thirteen studies met inclusion criteria: 8 single-center series and 5 national database studies. Age of injury was bimodal with peak frequencies at ages 3 and 16 years. National studies estimated a mean of 11.2 injuries per 100,000 children, with 5% to 8% of patients hospitalized. Analysis of both single-center series and national database studies revealed 3 major mechanisms of injury: blade injuries, projectile injuries, and burn injuries. Blade injuries resulted in higher morbidity, with a greater need for operative management, amputation, and longer length of hospitalization. Similarly, rider mowers posed a greater injury risk than push mowers.
This systematic review of lawnmower injuries in children identified patterns and mechanisms of injuries across the literature that may serve to educate parents, policy-makers, and health-care providers as well as provide data to develop and improve prevention strategies.
1The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
2St. Luke’s Health System, Boise, Idaho
3Children’s Mercy Hospital, Kansas City, Missouri
E-mail address for N.S. Talathi: firstname.lastname@example.org