A clinical and epidemiological study of upper limb injuries resulting from agricultural accidents

Ravikumar G., Manoharan R., Sugapradha G. R., Jenifer P.


Background: Agriculture remains the most important occupation in India and upper limb injuries occur frequently in agricultural accidents. Agriculture related injuries are important causes of mortality and morbidity in all age groups. These injuries result in major physical and psychological impacts as well as economical burdens. Objectives of the study was to study the pattern and epidemiological basis of agricultural hand injuries, to analyse the prognosis and recovery pattern of agricultural hand injuries in terms of return to work following treatment and to suggest measures for prevention of agricultural hand injuries.

Methods: The study was a descriptive study conducted in the department of plastic and reconstructive surgery, Thanjavur medical college from October 2012 to April 2017. About 220 patients admitted with agricultural upper limb injuries were evaluated. Data on age, sex, injury patterns, anatomical localizations, injury season, length of stay in the hospital, and infections were evaluated.

Results: Agricultural upper limb injuries constituted about 11.25% of total upper extremity trauma. Males were more commonly affected than females. Majority of the patients were in the age group 21-50. Most of the patients were right handed individuals. Hand injuries were more common (73%).

Conclusions: We can reduce agricultural upper limb injuries by shielding the rotating components of farming machinery that cause injuries, informing and educating farming families, forbidding the entrance of children to areas with agricultural machines, providing information about agricultural accidents and their prevention methods, and adjusting the working hours of farming personnel, especially in the hottest months of the year.


Agricultural injuries, Economic burden, Hand injuries

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