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Albany Medical Center,
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Albany, NY 12208

As Fourth of July Nears, Emergency Physicians Stress Fireworks Safety

ALBANY, N.Y., July 2, 2013 — As the region’s trauma center, Albany Medical Center is issuing a warning about the dangers of privately used fireworks this Independence Day.

“Fireworks-related injuries are frequent this time of year, particularly in young adults and children,” said Shellie Asher, M.D., an emergency medicine physician at Albany Med. “The best way to ensure a safe holiday is to leave the fireworks to the professionals.”

Physicians at Albany Med’s Emergency Department see a number of fireworks-related injuries around the Fourth of July, including severe burns and amputations. They share the following warnings:

• According to the American Academy of Emergency Physicians, nearly 10,000 firework-related injuries are treated in United States emergency departments each year.
• More than half of fireworks-related injuries occur among children under age 15.
• Burns to the eyes and hands are the most frequent injuries — including digit amputations.
• Sparklers cause the most injuries to children.
• Sparklers can burn at up to 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit, causing third-degree burns.

For more information:
Albany Medical Center, northeastern New York’s only academic health sciences center, is one of the largest private employers in the Capital Region. It incorporates the 651-bed Albany Medical Center Hospital, which offers the widest range of medical and surgical services in the region, and the Albany Medical College, which trains the next generation of doctors, scientists and other healthcare professionals, and also includes a biomedical research enterprise and the region’s largest physicians practice with nearly 400 doctors. Albany Medical Center works with dozens of community partners to improve the region’s health and quality of life. For more information: or


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Sue Ford
Extension: (518) 262 - 3421

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