Summer Injury Time

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Lots of things change when the seasons change.  Warmer weather brings different clothing, different plans, and different activities.  It also brings more incidents of trauma to area hospitals.

When it gets hot and humid outside, there's not much more inviting than a dip in cool water.  Even though it's clearly posted that you're not supposed to swim in the waters of the Nay Aug Gorge in Scranton, plenty of people do each year.  Accidents while cliff diving, believe it or not, are some of the most common incidents seen at hospitals that include Geisinger CMC, according to Dr. John Mitchell.

"That's one of the indicators that summer is coming. We see an increase in different type of accidents," said Dr. Mitchell, Director of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery at G-CMC.  He came from working at bigger city hospitals, where he says warmer weather meant an increase in violence, such as stabbings and shootings.  Here, he says, ATV accidents are notable.

"Of course we see routine things such as motor vehicle collisions, but we also see an increase in ATV accidents, as one example. People are on the road, ATVs are readily available, in all kind of activities day and nighttime," Dr. Mitchell told us.

He also noted that the hospital is prepared for more falls, swimming-related incidents, drownings, fireworks accidents, and dehydration.  He points out the majority of these examples are preventable and treatable.

"Any pain or discomfort that's occurring after an incident, you should seek medical attention. You don't know the severity of it."

As for prevention, think of the usual common sense tips.  Be cautious and don't take chances unnecessarily.  Wear helmets, for instance, and steer clear of drugs and alcohol if you'll be swimming or operating machinery.