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Collapsible Laundry Hampers Can Cause Severe Eye Injuries

MONDAY, July 1 (HealthDay News) -- Exposed wire in collapsible cloth laundry hampers can cause penetrating eye injuries in children, according to research published online July 1 in Pediatrics.

Adam L. Prickett, M.D., of the University of Illinois at Chicago Eye and Ear Infirmary, and colleagues report on two cases within one year of children who sustained penetrating ocular injuries from exposed wire in collapsible cloth and wire laundry hampers.

The researchers found that the injuries in both patients involved an eye laceration in addition to retinal complications similar to those reported for high-velocity injuries. Penetrating eye injuries, which are relatively rare in children, can be associated with poor visual outcomes and vision-threatening complications. This pattern of trauma indicates that children in households with this type of collapsible laundry hamper are at risk for eye injury.

"Two cases of severe ocular injury in children due to contact with the free wire end of collapsible hampers presented to the University of Illinois at Chicago within one year," the authors write. "This represents a significant pattern of eye injury and suggests that there exists a nontrivial risk for all children in households with this type of laundry hamper."

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