Falls and motor vehicle accidents are the most common cause of trauma injuries in children over the age of 1. Many children injured by falling or as a passenger, pedestrian or bicycle rider in a motor vehicle accident sustain multiple injuries such as broken bones, back and neck injuries and mild to severe brain damage.
Pediatric trauma surgeons at Riley at IU Health work with a team of pediatric specialists including doctors in emergency medicine, general surgery, neurosurgery, orthopedic surgery, anesthesiology, intensive care, respiratory care and many specialty nurses to provide lifesaving treatments. The trauma surgeons at Riley at IU Health treat more than 1,400 children a year. The high number of patients helps doctors anticipate what kind of care may be needed for children who have similar injuries.
The most common serious trauma injuries include:
- Head and spinal cord injuries
- Orthopedic injuries (broken bones)
- Abdominal or chest injuries
Once your child is out of danger and in a stable condition, rehabilitation may begin. A physiatrist (rehabilitation doctor) and a team of nurses will evaluate your child and recommend rehabilitation therapy to help him or her regain mobility and recover from the injury.
When your child sustains a traumatic injury:
- Initial treatment may begin at the scene of the injury to stabilize your child.
- Paramedics may ask you questions about the injury, your child’s general health and any medicines he or she currently takes.
- You, an ambulance or Indiana University Health LifeLine’s helicopter service will transport your child to the hospital.
- If your child is transported by ambulance or helicopter, the paramedics will communicate with the hospital to give an update on your child’s condition.
- When your child arrives at the emergency room, a trauma team is ready to take over.
- Your child’s most severe injuries will be evaluated and treated as soon as possible.
- You will be asked to stay in the waiting area while trauma surgeons and trauma specialists care for your child.
- Once your child is stabilized and doctors have completed emergency treatment, a doctor with the trauma team will come talk to you about your child’s condition.
- Once your child is stable, he or she may be admitted to the hospital.
- Your child may require the extra monitoring offered in the pediatric intensive care unit (PICU).
- When your child is well enough, rehabilitation services may begin to help your child regain certain functions and mobility.
Key Points to Remember
Key Points to Remember
- Trauma surgery is emergency care.
- Trauma surgery treats many conditions, including broken bones and injuries to the back, neck, brain, spinal cord chest and abdomen.
- A team of highly trained specialists works together to provide lifesaving care for children with trauma injuries.
- Rehabilitation services can help your child regain mobility and function once he or she is stabilized and in recovery.
In addition to our primary hospital location at the Academic Health Center in Indianapolis, IN, we have convenient locations to better serve our communities throughout the state.
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