Aquatic Orthopaedic Injuries

Robert H. Brophy, David L. Bernholt

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Extremity injuries sustained in aquatic environments require unique considerations compared with injuries sustained on land. Knowledge of these considerations is becoming more important as aquatic recreational activities increase in popularity. Aquatic injuries may occur through mechanical contact with a variety of different objects or surfaces, such as a recreational device or watercraft part, or may occur through contact with marine animals. Marine animal injuries can be further categorized into bites, stings, or blunt contact, as well as venomous or nonvenomous, distinctions that should be used to guide clinical management. Numerous instances of retained foreign bodies after marine animal stings exist, which can result in infection and prolonged envenomization; thus, radiographic examination should be routinely performed in aquatic sting injuries to prevent these harmful sequelae. Any aquatic injury resulting in an open wound has an increased risk for infection, and prophylactic antibiotics must be given with consideration for the unique microbiologic flora of the aquatic environment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)191-199
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
Issue number6
StatePublished - Mar 15 2019


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