Snow Catastrophe Conditions: What is its Impact on Orthopedic Injuries?

Document Type : RESEARCH PAPER


1 Road Trauma Research Center, Guilan University of Medical Sciences, Rasht, Iran

2 Orthopedic Department, Bahonar Hospital, Kerman University of Medical Sciences, Kerman, Iran


Iran places sixth amongst high risk natural disaster countries and Guilan province of Iran shoulders a large amount of socio-economic burden due to snow catastrophes. The more knowledge of circumstances we have, the more efficient our future encounters will be.
In this retrospective study, of all of the patients admitted to Poursina Hospital due to snow and ice related trauma in the first two weeks of February 2014, 306 cases were found eligible for entry into the present study.
Of the 306 eligible patients (383 injuries), there were 175 men (57.2%) and 131 women (42.8%). Most patients
suffered from orthopedic injuries (81%) and the most common fractures were distal radius fractures in the upper extremities and hip fractures in the lower extremities. Slipping was the most common and motor vehicle accidents had the rarest injury mechanisms. It was shown that the frequency of injuries were higher on icy days (67.6%) than snowy days (32.4%).
Snow crises may lead to increased risk of slipping and falling situations, especially on icy days. The peak of injury rates is a few days after snowfall with the most common injury being distal radius fracture. Providing essential instructions and supporting resource allocation to better handle such catastrophes may improve outcomes.


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