CHICAGO (AP) -- Children suffered an estimated 2.1 million bicycle-related injuries in the United States between 1992 and 1997, with boys much more likely than girls to get hurt, a study released Tuesday found.
About 1,500 deaths occurred during the six-year period.
Boys ages 5 through 14 were the most common victims, with an estimated 224,200 cycling injuries each year, compared with about 93,000 for girls the same age.
The findings by Drs. Elizabeth Powell and Robert Tanz of Children's Memorial Hospital in Chicago were published in the November issue of Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.
The researchers analyzed national data, including a survey of 600 emergency rooms.
The figures were weighted to produce a national estimate of about 2.1 million total injuries among children ages 1 through 14.
Boys in every age group were much more prone to injury, probably because they tend to develop the motor skills needed for cycling before girls do and tend to take more risks, Tanz said.
Most injuries occurred in falls from bicycles. Facial injuries, arm and leg fractures, and head injuries were the top three categories.
Though the figures did not indicate whether the children were wearing helmets, the researchers assumed many weren't, given the frequency of face and head injuries.
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