MINOR SPORTS INJURIES AS PROXY MEASURES OF MAJOR INJURY

Project: Research project

Project Details

Description

The purpose of this project is to study the use of minor sports injuries as
proxy measures for more serious athletic injuries in late adolescence. We
aim to assess whether: 1) individuals with major injuries have more minor
injuries than those without major injuries; 2) major injuries are preceded
by minor injuries; 3) specific types of minor injuries are associated with
specific types of major injuries; 4) periods of vulnerability to minor and
major injuries can be predicted by periods of stress; 5) medical records
are reliable and valid indicators of individual's injury experience.

Methodological issues which will be examined include: 1) a definition of
minor injuries which will be most predictive of major injuries (i.e., a
comparison of severity ratings based on restricted activity, level of
treatment, tissue damage); 2) the length of the time period during which
minor injuries occur that best predicts major injuries (i.e., are major
injuries preceded by a cluster of minor injuries the week before, the two
weeks before the occurrence of the major injury, the month before the major
injury?); 3) the reliability of self-reported injury data resulting in
medical treatment.

We propose to study the association between minor and major injuries at the
United States Military Academy at West Point (USMA). The USMA offers a
unique opportunity to study this issue because of a highly controlled and
uniform environment, the centralized provision and recording of health
care, a high frequency of athletic injuries, the ability to collect
self-report data directly through terminals at each cadet's desk, and the
strong interest the military has in injury prevention.

Three study designs will be employed: 1) a retrospective cohort study of
the medical records of 1400 cadets who entered the academy in 1988,
followed over their four year cadet careers; 2) a one year retrospective
cohort study of the records of cadets who played intramural football in
1991 (N = 700), 3) a one term prospective study of 100 cadets in intramural
football. Survival analysis will be used to study the association between
minor and major injuries.

If we can demonstrate that minor athletic injuries are associated with
major injuries, either in general, or for specific anatomical sites,
researchers will be able to formulate and test hypotheses about processes
which link injuries of different severity, and will be able to quantify,
the effect of preventive interventions aimed at minor injuries on the rate
of severe injuries.
StatusFinished
Effective start/end date9/1/918/31/92

Funding

  • Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development

ASJC

  • Emergency
  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Safety Research
  • Emergency Medicine
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

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