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Facial Firework Injury: A Case Series

  • Author(s): Tadisina, Kashyap Komarraju
  • Abcarian, Arianne
  • Omi, Ellen
  • et al.
Abstract

Fireworks are used to celebrate a variety of religious, patriotic, and cultural holidays and events around the world. Fireworks are common in the United States, with the most popular holiday for their use being national Independence Day, also known as July Fourth. The use of fireworks within the context of celebrations and holidays presents the ideal environment for accidents that lead to severe and dangerous injuries. Injuries to the face from explosions present a challenging problem in terms of restoring ideal ocular, oral, and facial function. Despite the well documented prevalence of firework use and injury, there is a relatively large deficit in the literature in terms of firework injury that involves the face. We present a unique case series that includes 4 adult male patients all with severe firework injuries to the face that presented at an urban level 1 trauma center. These four patients had an average age of 26.7 years old and presented within 5 hours of each other starting on July Fourth. Two patients died from their injuries and two patients underwent reconstructive surgical management, one of which had two follow up surgeries. We explore in detail their presentation, management, and subsequent outcomes as an attempt to add to the very limited data in the field of facial firework blast injury. In addition, the coincidence of their presentation within the same 5 hours brings into question the availability of the fireworks involved, and the possibility of similar injuries related to this type of firework in the future.  [West J Emerg Med. 2014;15(4):387-393.]

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