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Barbie Halloween costumes bring risk of skating injuries

UPI – With Barbie on wheels topping Google’s list of most-searched Halloween costumes this year, experts caution trick-or-treaters and partygoers that in-line skating can lead to serious injuries.

Costume makers could see the outfit’s potential as early as June 2022, when Barbie movie stars Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling, as Ken, were spotted inline skating around Venice Beach, California and they were wearing matching neon outfits.

“In-line skates can be a fun and exciting part of the costume,” orthopedic surgeon with Intermountain Health in Murray, Utah Dr Mike Holmstrom told UPI.

“At the same time, however, there can potentially be more injuries from these costumes, as the incidence of in-line skating injuries is increased in beginners without much experience,” Holmstrom said.

“Besides inexperience, more in-line skating injuries occur on uneven ground, at night or when alcohol is involved – all things that might be associated with skates as a part of a Halloween costume.”

Safety gear should be part of the outfit, doctors suggest.

Margot Robbie as Barbie and Ryan Gosling as Ken in a skating scene from ‘Barbie’. PHOTO: WARNER BROS PICTURES

For example, skipping a helmet because it doesn’t appear cool with the costume can be a costly mistake, said paediatric orthopaedic surgeon and a spokeswoman for the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons Dr Jennifer Weiss.

“If I could only beg one thing from parents, it is to make sure your children wear helmets when in-line skating,” Weiss said.

“Sometimes head injuries can be life-changing or even fatal,” Weiss warned.

In addition to the concern about the head, musculoskeletal injuries occur commonly with in-line or roller skates.

“Without question, wrist fractures are the number one injury for our orthopedic team as people naturally reach forward to catch themselves if they are about to fall,” said associate professor of sports medicine in the department of orthopedic surgery at University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha Matthew Tao.

“Certainly, the elbow, knee and ankle are susceptible as well, although to a lesser degree,” Tao said.

“Depending on the type of fracture, treatment can be either conservative – a splint versus a cast – or surgical, which typically involves fixing the bone with a plate and screws.”