Glass injuries seen in the emergency department of a South African district hospital

Doudou Nzaumvila, Indiran Govender*, Efraim B. Kramer

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Background: The emergency department of Embhuleni Hospital frequently manages patients with glass-related injuries. This study assessed these injuries and the glass that caused them in more detail. Aim: The objectives of our study included determining the type of glass causing these injuries and describing the circumstances associated with different types of glass injuries. Setting: The emergency department of Embhuleni Hospital in Elukwatini, Mpumalanga province, South Africa. Methods: This was a cross-sectional study with a sample size of 104 patients. Descriptive statistics were used to assess the characteristics of the glass injuries. Results: Five different types of glass were reported to have caused the injuries, namely car glass (7.69%), glass ampoules (3.85%), glass bottles (82.69%), glass windows (3.85%) and street glass shards (1.92%). Glass bottle injuries were mainly caused by assaults (90.47%) and most victims were mostly young males (80.23%). The assaults occurred at alcohol-licensed premises in 65.11% of cases. These injuries occurred mostly over weekends (83.72%), between 18:00 and 04:00. The face (34.23%) and the scalp (26.84%) were the sites that were injured most often. Conclusion: Assault is the most common cause of glass injuries, usually involving young men at alcohol-licensed premises. Glass injuries generally resulted in minor lacerations, with few complications (2.68%).

Original languageEnglish
Article number886
JournalAfrican Journal of Primary Health Care and Family Medicine
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2015


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