gms | German Medical Science

21st Annual Meeting of the German Retina Society and 8th Symposium of the International Society of Ocular Trauma (ISOT)

German Retina Society
International Society of Ocular Trauma

19.06. - 22.06.2008, Würzburg

Firework-related eye injury at New Year's eve - an ophthalmology unit's experience

Meeting Abstract

  • Anselm G. M. Jünemann - Erlangen/Germany
  • L. Heindl - Erlangen/Germany
  • R. Rejdak - Erlangen/Germany
  • F.E. Kruse - Erlangen/Germany

Retinologische Gesellschaft. International Society of Ocular Trauma. 21. Jahrestagung der Retinologischen Gesellschaft gemeinsam mit dem 8. Symposium der International Society of Ocular Trauma. Würzburg, 19.-22.06.2008. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2008. DocISOTRG2008V007

The electronic version of this article is the complete one and can be found online at:

Published: June 18, 2008

© 2008 Jünemann et al.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( You are free: to Share – to copy, distribute and transmit the work, provided the original author and source are credited.



Purpose: To report firework-related eye and adnexal injuries presenting to the Department of Ophthalmology during the last New Year's eve.

Methods: A retrospective analysis of all patients attending the Department of Opthalmology was done. The classes of fireworks, mechanisms of injuries and the time of trauma were assessed. The severity of diagnoses was classified.

Results: Of the 82 patients attending the department on December 31th and January 1st, 15 patients suffered from firework injuries. 10/15 (66%) of all injuries were caused bei class II and III fireworks. The mean age was 24±13 years (range 11 to 49 years). 5 patients were minors (< 18 years). Ocular injuries occurred more frequently in males (11 of 15, 73%). In 6 patients both eyes were injuried (40%). Right and left eye were affected equally. There was no open globe injury. The most common type of injury were skin and corneal erosions and abrasions. 5/15 eyes had severe injury with intraocular involvement (i.e. iris dialysis, retinal edema, retinal break) with visual impairment. The follow-up for inpatients (4/15, 27%) ranged from 3 to 15 days.

Conclusions: Eye injuries from firework can cause devastating visual and disfiguring effects. Although, it is an important public health problem, there is no analysis of all patients with firework injuries. The authors mention to establish an prospective surveillance system in Germany and debate stricter legislation regarding the domestic use of firework.