Retrospective studies of alpine skiing injuries show a large shift from the lower part of the body to the upper part; thus injuries to the face have become more frequent. In the years 1991 and 1992, out of 1656 injured patients at the Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery of Innsbruck, 179 were skiers.
Of all skiers, 76.5% were between 10 and 40 years of age. Seventy-one patients suffered dentoalveolar trauma (fractures, dislocations, and loss of teeth and periodont). The most exposed bone sustaining a fracture while skiing is the cheekbone. More than half of all accidents were collisions either with other persons or with some obstacle. Of all accidents, 6% took place on lift tracks or at the exit. Of the injured skiers, 24.6% had concomitant injuries, among whom 75% suffered brain injuries.
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