Bull Riding Injuries In Central Queensland
Bull riding is an increasingly popular and growing professional sport in Australia. This is the first national study that investigates bull riding-related injuries.
A six-year retrospective study of patients admitted to Rockhampton Base Hospital with acute injuries sustained whilst bull riding. Patients were identified from the Rockhampton Hospital international coding system and surgical audit excel databases. Supporting information was found from patient chart review.
Thirty-eight patients were admitted during the study. Injuries increased from 2008. The most common injuries were to limbs (52%), chest (15%) and brain (10%). Life-threatening injuries were all caused by a direct kick or trampling by the bull; 5% of patients needed air transfer to Brisbane, and 10% to Rockhampton for their acute care. The only complication was infection of open wounds. The average hospital stay was 2.2 (range= 1-5, SD= 1.1) days and 64% of patients required operative intervention.
Patients that had been kicked or trampled should be identified as having potentially life-threatening injuries, and transferred for review at an appropriate facility. Due to the high risk of infection all contaminated wounds should be washed out formally and receive antibiotics. Protective equipment should be encouraged among riders.