Objective: To assess injury patterns attributable to horse kicks, to raise the issue of preventive measures, and to evaluate the role of modern accident and emergency department computer software.
Methods: Data analysis using a new kind of full electronic medical record.
Results: Seventeen kicked equestrians were unmounted at the time of injury. Eight of seventeen patients sustained contusions of the extremities, the back, and the trunk. In nine patients an isolated facial injury was diagnosed. Five of nine patients needed referrals to the department of plastic surgery because of the complexity of the facial soft tissue wounds. Three underwent maxillofacial surgery.
Conclusion: Clinical: the equestrian community may underestimate the risk of severe injuries attribtuable to hoof kicks, especially while handling the horse. Educational lectures and the distribution of educational literature should be promoted. The introduction of additional face shields may be protective. Software related issue: the handling of an increasing amount of medical data makes a development in computerisation of emergency units necessary. Thus the increasing utilisation of new computer technology could have a significant influence on accident analysis and prevention and the quality of research in the future.
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