QNotes, Vol. 6, Issue 14
October 19 is World Pediatric Bone and Joint Day, part of the weeklong observance of Bone and Joint Action Week. One issue that is of growing concern among physicians, parents and coaches is the rise of anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries in adolescents.
The American Association of Pediatrics (AAP) reports on a study that reviewed the incidence of ACL injury in patients ages 6-18 years from 1994-2013 (Beck NA, et al. Pediatrics. 2017;139:e20161877). The authors found an overall ACL injury rate of 121 injuries per 100,000 person-years with the highest rates in 17-year-old males (422/100,000) and 16-year-old females (392/100,000). Perhaps a more important finding was that over the 20-year period, there was an average annual increase in the injury rate of 2.3%.
The AAP encourages coaches and players to participate in injury prevention programs to lower the rate of ACL injuries. Qmetrics concurs that education and awareness programs can be highly beneficial in preventing ACL and other bone and joint injuries in adolescents.