SPORTS RELATED EYE INJURIES

  • Ante T. Pletikosic, DO
  • Louis Leone, DO, FAOASM

Abstract

Many people experience sports and recreation-related eye injuries each year. In fact, the number is estimated to be around 100,000 with approximately 42,000 going to the ER for treatment. Sports-related injuries cause over 13,000 people to go blind yearly and is the leading cause of blindness in children in the United States. Sports can have a low, high, and very high risk of eye injury. Low-risk sports do not use a ball, puck, bat, stick, and do not involve body contact. Some include swimming, gymnastics, and cycling. High-risk sports involve what low-risk sports do not and include sports such as baseball, basketball, hockey, football, lacrosse, tennis, and water polo. Very high risk does not use eye protectors and involve full body contact such as boxing, wrestling, and contact martial arts. Protective eyewear includes goggles and safety glasses, safety shields and eye guards designed for a particular sport. Most frequent injuries involve baseball, basketball and racquet sports. The good news is that about 90% of serious eye injuries are preventable by using appropriate protective eyewear.

Section
Patient Education Handout