New research published in the August 2007 issue of the Journal of Spinal Cord Medicine indicates lap belt injuries sustained by children in motor vehicle accidents can be more serious than they initially appear. Injuries to children can occur in auto accidents where they have been improperly restrained in their seatbelts. Not only can back and spinal cord injuries occur, but also rupture to the organs and major blood vessels as well as bone fractures to the back and rib cage regions. This study indicated a very high association between spinal fractures, spinal cord injuries and intra-abdominal injuries. In other words, when one of these injuries is found, the others are also likely to be found. Unfortunately, spinal fractures and intra-abdominal injuries can often be difficult to diagnose. Moreover, delayed diagnosis and treatment can be devastating. Given these new findings, we urge parents to properly restrain their children in vehicles at all times, and when using custom restrains, be sure to carefully follow the manufacturer’s directions.
Source: Journal of Spinal Cord Medicine, August 2007.