Hair-Raising Data: ERs Seeing a Rise in These Injuries

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Highest injury rates seen for face for males and lower limbs for females
Highest injury rates seen for face for males and lower limbs for females

(HealthDay News) — From 1991 to 2013 there was an increase in the incidence of hair removal-related injuries, with incidence varying with age, according to a study published online Sept. 5 in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology.

Thomas A. Swain, M.P.H., from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, and colleagues used data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System from 1991 to 2014 to examine hair removal-related injuries. They determined incidence rates for the overall population, and stratified by gender and age category.

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The researchers found that there were an estimated 292,053 hair removal-associated injuries in the United States from 1991 to 2014. The highest overall incidence rate was seen in 2013 (nine per 100,000). From 1991 to 2010 the highest incidence was seen for those aged 65 years and older, while in 2011 the highest incidence was seen for those aged 19 to 34 years. The highest injury rates were seen to the face and lower limbs for males and females, respectively. Those aged 19 to 34 had higher incidence starting in 2010, especially for pubic and trunk regions.

"The incidence of hair removal-associated injuries seen by emergency departments increased nearly nine-fold between 1991 and 2013," the authors write. "Overall, individuals should practice safe and acceptable usage of hair removal products to reduce the risk of injury."

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