Published: 2017-03-28

Clinico-epidemiological profiles of patients sustaining ocular trauma due to firecrackers during the festive season of Diwali

Vasavi B. Joshi, Manisha B. Shastri, Khushnood M. Sheikh


Background: Considerable number of cases of firecracker injuries is reported during the festive season of Diwali in India. The purpose of this study is to identify the clinico-epidemiological patterns of ocular injuries caused by firecrackers during this period.

Methods: This was a prospective case series of patients attending eye OPD with ocular trauma sustained by Firecrackers during the festive season of Diwali, 2016 in a Tertiary Care Centre in Surat. Demographic data of all the patients and type of firecracker causing injury were noted. Ocular examination of all patients was performed at the time of presentation and on follow-up. Treatment received by the patients was noted.

Results: Out of total 20 patients, 85% were male (17 out of 20). Mean age of the patients was 12.15 years and majority of patients (45%) were of 6 to 10 years’ age group. Most patients (85%) sustained injury by Single shot crackers like Bijili crackers and Timing bombs. The injuries reported ranged from Eyelid burns, conjunctival or corneal burns to partial thickness corneal tear and macular scar formation with interventions ranging from ocular wash with saline to repair of partial thickness corneal tear. Many of the injuries were caused because of negligence. Corneal epithelial defect was the most frequent injury (affecting 96% of the total no. of eyes affected) followed by Eyelid burns (affecting 56% of the total no. of eyes affected). Cases having visual impairment or blindness had corneal and/or retinal involvement.

Conclusions: Ocular trauma resulting from firecrackers can lead to significant ocular morbidity and permanent blindness and is a preventable cause. All steps must be taken through public awareness and legislation to ensure that firecrackers are used in a safe manner during Diwali celebrations. The medical professionals should be adequately trained to give primary emergency care which has a key role in the visual outcome.


Firecracker injuries, Ocular trauma, Preventable blindness

Full Text:



John D, Philip SS, Mittal R, John SS, Paul P. Spectrum of ocular firework injuries in children: A 5-year retrospective study during a festive season in Southern India. Indian J Ophthalmol. 2015;63(11):843-6.

Gilbert C, Foster A. Childhood blindness in the context of vision 2020 – The right to sight. Bull World Health Organ. 2001;79:227-32.

Arya SK, Malhotra S, Dhir SP, Sood S. Ocular fireworks injuries. Clinical features and visual outcome. Indian J Ophthalmol. 2001;49:189-90.

Mansouri MR, Mohammadi SF, Hatef E, Rahbari H, Khazanehdari MS, Zandi P, et al. The Persian Wednesday Eve Festival “Charshanbe-Soori” Fireworks Eye Injuries: A Case Series. Ophthalmic Epidemiol. 2007;14:17-24.

Kumar R, Puttanna M, Sriprakash KS, Sujatha Rathod BL, Prabhakaran VC. Firecracker eye injuries during Deepavali festival: A case series. Indian J Ophthalmol. 2010;58:157-9.

Bairwa M, Rajput M, Sachdeva S. Modified kuppuswamy's socioeconomic scale: social researcher should include updated income criteria, 2012. Indian J Community Med. 2013;38:185-6.

Witsaman RJ, Comstock RD, Smith GA. Pediatric fireworks related injuries in the United States: 1990-2003. Pediatrics. 2006;118:296-303.

Vassilia K, Eleni P, Dimitrios T. Firework related injuries in Greece: A national problem. Burns. 2004;30:151-3.

Knox FA, Chan WC, Jackson AJ, Foot B, Sharkey JA, McGinnity FG. A British ophthalmological surveillance unit study on serious ocular injuries from fireworks in the UK. Eye (Lond). 2008;22:944-7.

Sacu S, Segur-Eitz N, Stenng K, Zehetmayer M. Ocular firework injuries at New Year’s Eve. Ophthalmologica. 2002;216:55-9.

Wisse RP, Bijlsma WR, Stilma JS. Ocular firework trauma: A systematic review on incidence, severity, outcome and prevention. Br J Ophthalmol. 2010;94:1586-91.

Wilson RS. Ocular fireworks injuries and blindness. An analysis of 154 cases and a three-state survey comparing the effectiveness of model law regulation. Ophthalmology. 1982;89:291-7.

Chan WC, Knox FA, McGinnity FG, Sharkey JA. Serious eye and adnexal injuries from fireworks in Northern Ireland before and after lifting of the firework ban – An ophthalmology unit's experience. Int Ophthalmol. 2004;25:167-9.

Thygesen J. Ocular injuries caused by fireworks 25 years of experience with preventive campaigns in Denmark. Acta Ophthalmol Scand 2000;78:1-2.