Eye injuries related to bird attacks: A three year snapshot

Amy T. Wang, Susan Zhang, Ario Wilson-Pogmore, Neharika Sharma

Meeting:  2022 RANZCO


Date:      -

Session Title: OTHER

Session Time:      -

Purpose: To examine the incidence of bird related eye injuries over the last three years in a tertiary teaching hospital in South-East Queensland.

Method: Emergency department presentations to the Sunshine Coast University Hospital coded as “bird attack” or “bird swoop” were analysed. Presentations that did not wait for assessment or did not have bird-related eye injury were excluded from analysis. Retrospective chart reviews were performed to determine demographic data, details of eye injury, ophthalmology review/ involvement and subsequent management.

Results: There were 43 presentations of bird related eye injuries during the above period. The median age of patients was 54 years of age, (64.3% male: 35.7% female). Fourteen patients were reviewed by ophthalmology (32.6%), and two required surgical intervention (4.7%). One case (2.3%) received intravitreal injection of vancomycin and ceftazidime.

Conclusion: Numerous patients present to the emergency department with an eye injury resulting from a bird attack, with the majority managed conservatively. A third of the patients from our cohort required ophthalmology review with a small subgroup proceeding to operative management. Visitors and residents of this region should be aware of the possibility of serious harm from bird attacks, and protective eyeglasses near bird habitats is recommended.