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Firearm injuries in children: Prevention

Authors
Anne C Gill, DrPH, MS, RN
David E Wesson, MD
Section Editor
Teresa K Duryea, MD
Deputy Editor
Mary M Torchia, MD

INTRODUCTION

Firearm injury is a major cause of morbidity and mortality in the United States and an important medical and public health problem. Children may be injured or killed in shootings; may lose parents, siblings, or other relatives in shootings; or may be adversely affected by witnessing shootings. (See "Intimate partner violence: Childhood exposure".)

Pediatric health professionals can provide leadership for improved gun safety through education of patients and families, advocacy for legislation that protects children from firearm injuries, or becoming informed spokespersons for firearm safety.

This topic review will describe the epidemiology of pediatric firearm injury and review strategies for prevention of firearm injuries in children. The primary focus will be on unintentional injuries. Intentional violence is discussed separately. (See "Peer violence and violence prevention" and "Suicidal behavior in children and adolescents: Epidemiology and risk factors".)

Societal issues associated with access to firearms, such as Second Amendment rights and individual freedoms and responsibilities, exceed the scope of this topic review.

EPIDEMIOLOGY

Firearm injury is a major cause of morbidity and mortality in the United States and an important medical and public health problem [1-3].

           

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Literature review current through: Feb 2017. | This topic last updated: Tue Mar 07 00:00:00 GMT+00:00 2017.
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