Research finding: Over-the-water rope tree swings fraught with danger

Research finding: Over-the-water rope tree swings fraught with danger

Years ago on a canoe trip in Missouri, University of Mississippi Medical Center pediatrician Dr. Will Sorey took in the beauty of a spring-fed river - marred, however, by some things that can be pretty ugly when it comes to your health.

“As we went, I noticed about every quarter mile that there were rope swings hanging in various stages of disrepair,” said Sorey, professor of pediatrics. “I asked the outfitter on the trip about them, and he said, 'Those are not our swings, and we've had more injuries on them than anything else.'”

That canoe trip was Sorey's impetus for more than a decade of the study of river tree rope swings and their dangers. He canoes or kayaks rivers and streams at least twice monthly, mostly in central and south Mississippi, but also has collected data in other states.  “It's what's known as having an avocation within your vocation,” said Sorey, who wrote a journal article based on his research. “There's very little that has been written about river swings, and it piqued my interest.”

There's also very little education on the propensity for river tree rope swing injuries. The most common: broken fingers or burns that happen when someone grips or loses their grip on a swinging rope, especially when they grasp thin lengths of rope that are tied to the end of a thicker section.

The worst: paralysis or death from drowning, usually either from the person being injured in the course of their fall or being entrapped under water by brush or trees.

Use of rope swings can be extreme, such as a 2013 incident in which a Utah 22-year-old was killed trying to swing through the opening of a 110-foot-tall sandstone arch in the mountains near Salt Lake City. The man was trying to imitate a stunt he saw on a video that had gone viral on YouTube.

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From Mississippi Medicine: Blistering rates of physician burnout ignite search for answers

(Editor's Note: This article was first published in Mississippi Medicine, the alumni magazine of the University of Mississippi School of Medicine.)

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From Mississippi Medicine: Blistering rates of physician burnout ignite search for answers

Walmart gift makes it Christmas in July at Batson

Walmart gift makes it Christmas in July at Batson

The heat index may be around the triple digits this month, but Wednesday morning was looking a lot like Christmas in July at Batson Children's Hospital.

Toy trucks and trains, baby dolls, building blocks and Barbies - these and more were unloaded by the truckload when Walmart brought a toy donation valued at about $20,000 to the front of the state's only children's hospital.

Ricky Sharpe, a driver for Walmart's Brookhaven distribution center, said year in and year out, the company and its people make Christmas happen at Batson Children's Hospital twice a year, in July and December, with a large shipment of donated toys from stores in the state. This shipment had 24 pallets of toys that came in a convoy of trucks. The toys will be delivered throughout the year.

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UMMC staff receive service recognition

The Medical Center is proud to acknowledge those employees who will celebrate service anniversaries this week.

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UMMC staff receive service recognition

Residents join pediatrics, medicine faculty

Residents join pediatrics, medicine faculty

The Medical Center is proud to announce the following additions to its faculty and leadership staff.

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Prostate cancer mini symposium, inaugural Chen Lectureship top week's agenda

A number of interesting events is scheduled for the upcoming week at the Medical Center.

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Prostate cancer mini symposium, inaugural Chen Lectureship top week's agenda

UMMC faculty, staff, students achieve local, national acclaim

UMMC faculty, staff, students achieve local, national acclaim

Faculty and staff in the Department of Infectious Diseases, the Department of Preventive Medicine, the Department of Surgery and AirCare; students in the School of Dentistry and the School of Medicine; and the institution itself have distinguished themselves locally and nationally.

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