News Releases

News Releases

For Immediate Release

Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Sees Significant Increases in Bicycle and Dog Bite Injuries During Summer Trauma Season

Children’s Hospital is only Level 1 Pediatric Trauma Center in Western Pennsylvania

The number of patients admitted to Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh for dog bite and bicycle injuries - which are common during summer trauma season - has increased significantly over the last three years.

Summer traditionally bring an increase in the number of traumas at Children’s as kids head outdoors for activities like swimming, sports and bicycling.

At Children’s, admissions for bicycle crashes rose from 165 in 2000 to 218 in 2002. The number of hospital admissions due to dog bite injuries has nearly doubled, from 17 in 2000 to 33 in 2002. And even though summer trauma season has just begun, already 42 children have been admitted for bicycle injuries and 10 children for dog bite injuries.

“Summer-related traumas involve injuries that can often be prevented,” said Barbara Gaines, MD, associate director of Children’s Benedum Trauma Program. “Parents need to be aware of what their children are doing and make sure they have the proper safety equipment, like helmets and pads.”

Other common summer traumas treated at Children’s include injuries from scooter crashes, near-drownings and drownings, ATV wrecks and trampoline and playground falls.

Trauma injuries are the leading cause of death in children ages 1 to 21, according to the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, and account for more than 16 million emergency department visits nationwide each year.

Children’s Emergency Department and trauma program treat more than 50,000 children annually. For children who are admitted, the trauma program is one of only 15 accredited Level 1 Pediatric Trauma Centers in the nation; one of only two in Pennsylvania; and the only one serving western Pennsylvania.

In addition to providing world-class trauma care, Children’s is committed to providing families with valuable injury prevention information. The hospital’s Injury Prevention Web site has more than 300 pages of injury prevention information for families covering a variety of topics including street, bicycle and swimming pool safety. This site can be viewed by visiting  and clicking on “Injury Prevention.”

Marc Lukasiak, 412-692-5016,
Melanie Finnigan, 412-692-5016,

Last Update
February 20, 2008
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Last Update
February 20, 2008