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2000 to 2009 Saw Drop in Pediatric Hydrocarbon Injuries

Injuries mainly among males, children aged 1 to 2; ingestion is most common mechanism of injury

MONDAY, May 6 (HealthDay News) -- While hydrocarbon-related injuries decreased from 2000 to 2009, trends in these injuries remained similar, according to a review published online May 6 in Pediatrics.

Heath A. Jolliff, D.O., from the Central Ohio Poison Center in Columbus, and colleagues retrospectively reviewed data from the National Poison Data System and the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System to compare hydrocarbon-related injuries in children aged 5 years and younger from 2000 through 2009.

The researchers found that over the study period there were 65,756 actual calls to regional poison centers and an estimated 40,158 emergency department visits for hydrocarbon-related injuries. Injuries were more common in males and among children aged 1 to 2 years of age. Most injuries resulted from ingestion and did not result in hospitalization. Over the 10-year period there was a significant decrease in the rate of emergency department visits and calls to poison centers. Seasonal variation was noted for exposure to hydrocarbons, with more occurrences seen in the summer months.

"Although this study demonstrates a significant decrease in hydrocarbon-related injuries in children over the 10-year study period, it is evident that despite current prevention efforts and packaging regulations, hydrocarbons still present a high risk for exposure and injury in children," the authors write.

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