Possible Injuries Associated With Fall From Bed In Children & Elderly

Often at times we come across situations, especially when we have either an infant or an elderly person in our family where either the child or the elderly individual falls from the bed sustaining injuries. Some of these injuries may complicate the already fragile nature of the health. In this article, we discuss what may be the possible causes for these falls and what injuries can the child or an elderly sustain after falling from the bed accidentally.

Possible Injuries Associated With Fall From Bed In Children & Elderly

Possible Injuries Associated With Fall From Bed In Children?

Usually, infants after age of about six or seven months when they actually learn to roll over are the ones who are more prone to falling from bed. This range increases up to age of 5 to 6 years, but in this case the fall is usually from sleeping on the top of a bunk bed without rails. In cases of infants, the fall occur normally while sleeping or playing in bed where the infant unknowingly rolls to the edge of the bed and fall down. Some of the injuries the child can sustain are:

Fracture: This is the most common injury that a child can sustain after falling from the bed. If the child falls on the elbow then it may result in an elbow fracture. Other bones that can be fractured due to falling from bed are the fracture of the radius, ulna, clavicle, and in some cases the coccyx fracture.

Head Injuries: In some cases, a child who has fallen off from the bed can suffer a head injury, which will lead to loss of consciousness, drowsiness, nausea, and vomiting. The child will be irritable and fidgety and not act normal.

Bruise and Lacerations: If a child falls from the bed and hits the edge of the bed or some other part of the furniture, then it may result in bruises or lacerations, which in some cases may require suture repairs.

Soft Tissue Injury: In some cases, it has also been noted that a child suffers from a soft tissue injury usually of the upper extremity and shoulders where the bulk of the body weight is put at the time of the fall. This is not a serious injury and is normally amenable to massage therapy and a little bit of exercises.

What Can Cause Elderly People to Fall From Bed?

Coming to elderly people falling out of bed, it is quite common, especially if they are put on a bed without safety rails on it. Some of the possible causes of fall from bed in the elderly are:

Accidental Falls: This is one of the most common causes of falling off of the bed. An accidental fall can occur when reaching for a TV remote or going to switch off the table lamp at the bedside.

Falling Off the Edge of the Bed: If the elderly person is not placed in the bed properly and the bed has no safety rails, then the individual is at high risk of falling from the bed and sustaining serious injuries. In some cases, an individual having mobility issues finds it difficult to roll about may force their way to turn to the side and as such may get too much momentum resulting in a fall from the bed.

Bed Transfer: Another common cause of fall from the bed is while the individual is being transferred from the bed to a chair or another bed.

Possible Injuries Associated With Fall From Bed In Children And Elderly

Coming to the injuries that an elderly person can sustain as a result of fall off of the bed are:

Fracture/Dislocation: Elderly people have fragile bones and as such even a minor fall can result in dislocation or fracture of the bones. This may usually occur at the point of impact, which is normally the low back or the hip. In case of falling on the shoulders, a clavicle fracture may be the case. Hip dislocation is also quite a common injury that occurs due to a fall off of the bed. An individual with a previous history of hip replacement or hip dislocations are more prone for refracturing or re-dislocating the hip and may even displace the construct of the replaced hip.

Lacerations/Bruises: An individual can sustain bruises or lacerations if some part of the body hits the edge of the bed or any other part of the furniture which may require suturing.

Head Injury: This is quite a serious injury, especially in the elderly as it may result in a hematoma or hemorrhage. Emergent evaluation is necessary if the individual has loss of consciousness, has altered mentation, and has nausea with vomiting as a result of falling from the bed.

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Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:April 16, 2019

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