10 June, 2009

Danger: Falling computer monitors

Young children are the most at risk, says study

05:55 AM Jun 10, 2009

WASHINGTON - Blurry vision and wrist pain are among the well-known health perils of computer use - but a study in America released yesterday shows a rise in the number of previously-overlooked injuries due to computer equipment falling over.

Researchers found a 732-per-cent rise in “acute computer-related injuries” from 1994 to 2006, double the 309-per-cent increase in household computer ownership over the period, according to a study in the July issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Young children are particularly at risk, it said.

Data showed that more than 78,000 such injuries, including large numbers of head injuries due to toppling computer monitors, had been treated in US emergency rooms during the 13-year period.

Children under the age of five had the highest injury rate, with the most common cause being tripping or falling, according to researchers from Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio.

Children under the age of 10 and seniors above the age of 60 also had higher injury rates.

More than nine in 10 injuries occurred in the home, the Journal reported.

“Future research on acute computer-related injuries is needed as this product becomes increasingly intertwined in our everyday lives,” said Ms Lara McKenzie of the hospital’s Center for Injury Research and Policy.

Monitor-related injuries surged in the first years of the study, from 11.6 per cent of cases in 1994 to a peak of 37.1 per cent in 2003.

By 2006 the figure had dropped to just over 25 per cent, as heavier cathode ray tube monitors were replaced by lighter and easier-to-lift LCD monitors. AFP

From TODAY, World – Wednesday, 10-Jun-2009; see the source article here.

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