Sports-related kidney injuries occur significantly less frequently than other injuries in high school athletes, according to a study published online in Pediatrics.
Matthew M. Grinsell, MD, PhD, of the University of Utah in Salt Lake City, and colleagues analyzed data from the National Athletic Trainers’ Association High School Injury Surveillance Study.
The researchers found that 23,666 injuries were reported from over 4.4 million athlete-exposures. There were 18 non-catastrophic kidney injuries reported (none of which required surgery), compared with 3,450 knee, 2,069 head/neck/spine, 1,219 mild traumatic brain, 148 eye, and 17 testicle injuries. Kidney injuries occurred most often in students playing football (12 injuries) or girls’ soccer (two injuries). Rates of sport-specific kidney injury were significantly lower than sport-specific rates for mild traumatic brain, head/neck/spine, and knee injuries for all sports as well as rates for baseball- and basketball-specific eye injuries.
“Kidney injuries occur significantly less often than other injuries during sport,” the authors wrote. “These data do not support limiting sport participation by athletes with single kidneys.”