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The rate was highest for both males and
females in the 15--19 years age group.
Among very young children (aged
0--4 years), the leading cause for
injury hospitalisation was a fall (42%),
while smoke, fire, heat and hot substances
accounted for 8% and poisoning by
pharmaceuticals accounted for 6%.
For older children (5--14 years), 46% of
injury hospitalisations were the result of a
fall and 16% were transport-related.
The most common causes of injury
hospitalisation for young adults aged
15--24 years were transport-related
injuries (19%), falls (14%), assault (11%)
and intentional self-harm (10%). A similar
pattern was seen in adults aged 25-44
years, where transport-related injury
hospitalisation accounted for 17%, falls 14%
and 11% each for self-harm and assault.
Falls (32%) were the leading cause of
injury hospitalisations for adults aged
45--64, and 14% were transport-related.
More than three-quarters (76%) of injury
hospitalisations for people aged 65 and
over occurred as a result of a fall.
Rates of injury increased with geographical
remoteness. The lowest rate of 1,728 cases
per 100,000 population occurred in major
cities in Australia, while the highest (3,857
cases per 100,000 population) occurred in
very remote Australia.
Consumers can take calcium
supplements with con dence
Consumers can take calcium supplements
with confidence following a recent review
of the scientific literature according to the
Australian Self-Medication Industry (ASMI).
The review, in the November issue of
Advances in Nutrition,1 was conducted by
a panel of academic and industry experts
in the fields of nutrition, cardiology,
epidemiology, food science, bone health,
and integrative medicine.
Unintentional falls top
Unintentional falls remain the leading
cause of injuries requiring hospitalisation
in Australia and account for more
than three-quarters (76%) of injury
hospitalisations for people aged 65
The Australian Institute of Health
and Welfare (AIHW) report, Hospital
separations due to injury and poisoning:
Australia 2009--10 shows that there were
about 420,000 injury cases requiring
hospitalisation in Australia during
2009--10, an age-standardised rate of
1,858 cases per 100,000 people. This is
similar to the rate recorded in 2008--09
(1,865 cases per 100,000 people), but an
increase on the rate in 1999--2000 (1,724
cases per 100,000 people).
AIHW spokesperson Professor James
Harrison said that of the 420,000
hospitalised injuries in 2009--10, 38%
were due to falls, the same proportion as
'Of all hospitalised injuries, 26% occurred
in the home. Females were more likely to
be injured in the home, while males were
more likely to have been injured on a
street or highway.'
More females were hospitalised due to
falls than males (90,100 cases compared
with 71,000 cases). Overall, however,
more than half of all hospitalised injury
cases -- around 242,500 -- involved men.
The second most common cause
of hospitalised injury was transport
accidents, accounting for 13% of cases.
More than twice as many males as
females were hospitalised for a transport
injury (37,100 compared with 17,000).
ASMI Regulatory and Scientific Affairs
Director, Steven Scarff, welcomed
the panel's authoritative assessment,
saying that the results were re-assuring
and important news for both consumers
and healthcare professionals.
After reviewing 16 studies involving
more than 358,000 individuals, the panel
concluded that there was no connection
between calcium intake and heart disease
In reaching their conclusion, the
panel collected and examined the
available scientific literature, including
randomised controlled trials (RCTs)
and observational data.
Mr Scarff said that some recent articles2,3,4
suggested that there was a link between
calcium supplements and the risks
of stroke and cardiovascular disease.
However, this new review provides good
evidence that calcium supplements
are safe and are not associated with an
increased risk of heart disease or stroke.
Calcium supplements have been proven to
be effective in reducing the risk of fractures
and so play a useful role in the treatment
Mr Scarff said that this new safety
analysis was in addition to the already
good evidence on the effectiveness of
'Consumers should continue to aim for
the recommended daily calcium intake
of 1000--1300mg/day, depending on
their age and sex,7 and they should do
this through eating a healthy diet or from
supplements where their dietary intake
was inadequate,' Mr Scarff said.
1. Heaney RP, Kopecky S, Maki KC, Hathcock J, Mackay D, Wallace
TC. A review of calcium supplements and cardiovascular disease
risk. Adv Nutr. 2012;3:763--71.
2. Bolland MJ, Grey A, Avenell A, Gamble GD, Reid IR, Calcium
supplements with or without vitamin D and risk of
cardiovascular events: reanalysis of the Women's Health Initiative
limited access dataset and meta-analysis, BMJ 2011;342:d2040.
3. Bolland MJ, Avenell A, Baron JA, Grey A, Maclennan GS, Gamble
GD, Reid IR. Effect of calcium supplements on risk of myocardial
infarction and cardiovascular events: meta-analysis. BMJ. Jul
2010;29:341:c3691. doi: 10.1136/bmj.c3691.
4. Kuanrong Li, Rudolf Kaaks, Jakob Linseisen, and Sabine
Rohrmann. Associations of dietary calcium intake and calcium
supplementation with myocardial infarction and stroke risk and
overall cardiovascular mortality in the Heidelberg cohort of the
European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition
study. Heart May 2012;98:920e925.
5. Tang BM, Eslick GD, Nowson C, Smith C, Bensoussan A.
Use of calcium or calcium in combination with vitamin
D supplementation to prevent fractures and bone loss in
people aged 50 years and older: a meta-analysis. Lancet. Aug
6. Osteoporosis Australia. Calcium Supplements: latest debate --
safety of calcium supplements. www.osteoporosis.org.au
7. Australian Government, DOHA, NHMRC Recommended Dietary
falls remain the
leading cause of
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