BACKGROUND: Sports and recreational activities are an increasing source of ocular trauma, responsible for up to a quarter of all eye injuries (100,000+ per year). The United States Eye Injury Registry reports that 13% of serious eye injuries are sustained during sports activities. Of these injuries, eighteen percent result in legal blindness. Eye care providers need the expertise to manage traumatic injuries sustained in the sports arena as well as to provide athletes education on sports protective eye wear.
CASE REPORT(S). Several case reports will be presented to demonstrate the risk, urgency of treatment, diagnosis and management, and appropriate follow-up care and possible complications associated with various sports. A video presentation will demonstrate the crash of a 32 year old Top Fuel Race Car driver. Despite a severe crash resulting in concussion, severe ecchymosis and subconjunctival hemorrhage, his protective helmet and face shield prevented any serious ocular or visual damage. A 20 year old baseball player hit by a ball while bunting suffered blunt trauma with secondary hyphema, traumatic mydriasis, and angle recession. A 15 year old soccer player develops commotio retina and intraretinal hemorrhages after being hit in the face with a soccer ball. A 14 year old basketball player suffers a partial optic nerve avulsion with resulting superior altitudinal visual field defect after being poked by a finger in the eye during practice.
CONCLUSIONS. With the increasing number of individuals involved in sporting activities, from young children throughout adulthood, the eye care practitioner must be ready to handle any type of ocular injury with appropriate diagnosis, management, follow-up, and thorough patient education.