The incidence and patterns of illness at the Sochi 2014 Winter Paralympic Games: a prospective cohort study of 6564 athlete days

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Derman, Wayne, Schwellnus, Martin, Jordaan, Esmè, Runciman, P., Van de Vliet, Peter, Blauwet, Cheri A., Webborn, Nick, Willick, Stuart E. and Stomphorst, Jaap (2016) The incidence and patterns of illness at the Sochi 2014 Winter Paralympic Games: a prospective cohort study of 6564 athlete days British Journal of Sports Medicine, 50. pp. 1064-1068. ISSN 0306-3674

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Abstract

Objective.  To describe the epidemiology of illness at the Sochi 2014 Winter Paralympic Games.  Methods.  A total of 547 athletes from 45 countries were monitored daily for 12 days over the Sochi 2014 Winter Paralympic Games (6564 athlete days). Illness data were obtained daily from teams without their own medical support (13 teams, 37 athletes) and teams with their own medical support (32 teams, 510 athletes) through electronic data capturing systems.  Results.  The total number of illnesses reported was 123, with an illness incidence rate (IR) of 18.7 per 1000 athlete days (95% CI 15.1% to 23.2%). The highest IR was reported for wheelchair curling (IR of 20.0 (95% CI 10.1% to 39.6%)). Illnesses in the respiratory system (IR of 5.6 (95% CI 3.8% to 8.0%)), eye and adnexa (IR of 2.7 (95% CI 1.7% to 4.4%)) and digestive system (IR of 2.4 (95% CI 1.4% to 4.2%)) were the most common. Older athletes (35–63 years) had a significantly higher IR than younger athletes (14–25 years, p=0.049).  Conclusions.  The results of this study indicate that Paralympic athletes report higher illness incidence rates compared to Olympic athletes at similar competitions. The highest rates of illness were reported for the respiratory and digestive systems, eye and adnexa, respectively. Thus, the results of this study form a basis for the identification of physiological systems at higher risk of illness, which can in turn inform illness prevention and management programmes with eventual policy change to promote athlete safety in future editions of the Winter Paralympic Games.

Item Type: Journal article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Paralympic; impairment; disability; illness;international sporting events; athletes
Subjects: C000 Biological and Biomedical Sciences > C600 Sport and Exercise Science
L000 Social Sciences > L300 Sociology > L340 Disability
B000 Health Professions > B100 Anatomy Physiology and Pathology > B120 Physiology
B000 Health Professions > B100 Anatomy Physiology and Pathology
B000 Health Professions > B100 Anatomy Physiology and Pathology > B190 Anatomy, Physiology and Pathology not elsewhere classified
N000 Business and Management > N800 Travel, Tourism and Transport Management > N820 Event Management
L000 Social Sciences > L300 Sociology > L311 Sport and Leisure
B000 Health Professions > B400 Nutrition > B420 Sports Nutrition
H000 Engineering > H300 Mechanical Engineering > H380 Sports Technology
C000 Biological and Biomedical Sciences > C800 Psychology > C813 Sport and Exercise Psychology
DOI (a stable link to the resource): 10.1136/bjsports-2016-096215
Depositing User: Converis
Date Deposited: 08 Jul 2016 03:01
Last Modified: 26 Sep 2016 10:42
URI: http://eprints.brighton.ac.uk/id/eprint/15724

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