University Hospital releases 2nd annual trauma report

Car, bike accidents top list of traumatic injuries


SAN ANTONIO – University Hospital recently released its second annual trauma report, with car crashes topping the list of injuries.

While there was a slight decline in the car crash injury rate in 2013, it is still the leading cause of injuries in patients seen at University Hospital.

Many of those accidents involved alcohol.

"We see that as a component of car crashes about 30 percent of the time of the patients that we treat, and that can affect adults and children," said University Hospital trauma surgeon, Dr. Lillian Liao.

Another preventable injury seen in auto accidents comes from children being inappropriately restrained in adult seat belts.

"That adult seat belt will crush them all the way from the front of their belly all the way to their back and it effectively acts as a strangulation device," Liao said.

One of the most common reasons adults and children end up in the emergency room is bicycle accidents.

The number of accident victims seen at University Hospital is up 400 percent in the last five years.

"When you look at where the children are being injured, they're being injured around their neighborhoods. So this is something that happens near and close to homes," Liao said.

Emergency room doctors also saw an increase in the number of dog bites in children, up nearly 200 percent since 2009.

There have also been many children coming in with burns.

"The burns that we do see now are from hot food, particularly from hot noodle soup, which is something that's easy for kids to make and for us to give them," Liao said.

There have been more adults treated at University Hospital from the Eagle Ford Shale each year: 476 in 2010, up to 744 last year.

Most of those are being attributed to an increase in motor vehicle collisions coming from those counties.

"The other injuries are crush injuries and injuries from falls," Liao said.

The hospital's second annual trauma report reveals a range of accidents, most with a common thread -- they could have been prevented.

Click here to see the full University Hospital report.