247,000 people were treated for lawn mower-related injuries last year and more than 18,000 of them were children under age 19, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reports. Lawn mower-related injuries have increased 7 percent since 2008.
With the summer mowing season approaching, the American Society for Reconstructive Microsurgery (ASRM), American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), American Society of Maxillofacial Surgeons (ASMS), American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), and American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) are working together to prevent injuries and educate adults and children about the importance of lawn mower safety.
“Lawn mower injuries are not only among the most devastating I’ve seen in over 20 years of practice, they are also the most preventable,” said ASRM President Peter Neligan, MD. “When a lawn mower injury happens to a child it is even more devastating because it is invariably due to the inattention of an adult. Don’t let your life or the life of your child be irrevocably changed by a moment of inattention.”
Many lawn mower-related injuries require a team of physicians from various specialties – plastic surgery, microsurgery, maxillofacial surgery, pediatrics, and orthopaedics – to properly repair them. Often, patients must endure painful reconstructive operations for months, sometimes years, to restore form and function.
“Lawn mower injuries often include deep cuts, loss of fingers and toes, limb amputations, broken and dislocated bones, burns, and eye injuries,” said ASPS President Michael McGuire, MD. “Most are caused by careless use and can be prevented by following a few simple safety tips.”