Complications of ocular paintball injuries in children

S. Hargrave, D. Weakley, C. Wilson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Purpose: To evaluate the ocular complications of paintball injuries in children. Methods: The clinical course of four children with traumatic ocular paintball injuries was evaluated. All patients underwent a complete ocular examination. Their age, injuries sustained, surgical procedure(s) performed, presence of protective eyewear at the time of injury, and final visual outcome was assessed. The presence of directly related anterior and posterior segment abnormalities were also evaluated. Results: Four boys sustained traumatic paintball injuries. Average patient age was 11.25 years (range: 10-12 years). None of the children were wearing ocular or facial protection at the time of the initial injury. All patients had hyphema and traumatic cataract, and some form of retinal pathology (vitreous hemorrhage, epiretinal membrane, retinal hemorrhage, and choroidal rupture). One child had a partial-thickness corneal laceration that did not require surgical intervention. All other patients underwent ophthalmic surgery. Final visual acuity was 20/30 or better in two patients, and 20/100 or worse in the others. The cause of decreased visual acuity in these children was directly related to macular pathology. Conclusion: Ocular injuries resulting from paintball impact are often severe and usually occur when the participants are not wearing eye protection or this protection becomes dislodged. Treatment of these injuries is sometimes limited to an attempt to salvage what remains of useful vision. Unfortunately, most of these sports-related injuries could have been prevented if patients wore adequate eye protection when involved in this sport.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)338-343
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of pediatric ophthalmology and strabismus
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 30 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Ophthalmology


Dive into the research topics of 'Complications of ocular paintball injuries in children'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this