Does a Full Moon Make People Go to ER?
Full Moon Madness, Reality or Myth?
We are all excited about watching the Super Snow Moon, which according to NASA will be the “biggest and brightest of 2019”. The full moon has been captivating human beings since the dawn of time and has been the main character in countless stories and legends. From werewolves, and vampires to ghostly apparitions.
ER’s are no strangers to full moon lore, there is no shortage of stories told by emergency room staff regarding crazy situations and unusual patient count during a full moon.
This is so much so the case, that even the Wall Street Journal published an article on the subject. In the article, they interviewed clinical staff from several hospitals and ER’s across the country and asked them to recount what it was like to work in an ER during a full moon.
According to those interviewed, not only did a full moon mean an increase in patients, but they also said they treated more patients with rare ailments or injuries.
However, there is a little bit of a controversy between what hospital and ER staff see and believe compared to what studies have found.
One study from the American Journal of Medicine in which the data of one emergency room over 4 years was evaluated, concluded there were no significant increases in ER visits on full moon nights.
But other studies including one published in the Journal of Clinical Psychology did find a link between criminal behavior and psychiatric crises and the moon face. One study found that some crimes including rape, assault, drunkenness, and disorderly conduct occurred more frequently 3-days before to and after a full moon.
So, is the full moon madness a reality or a myth? The answer is complicated as you can see. From our experience, our emergency centers on average see an increase of 6.75% in the number of patients we treat during the full moon. This happens consistently enough to suggest there is some truth to the idea that the full moon does have an influence on human behavior and health.
Whether you believe the moon has an influence over you or not, the best advice we can give you is to put aside all myths and if you get a chance catch a glimpse of the beautiful full moon. Nevertheless, it’s wise to always be careful and vigilant in any activity you do. Remember, an accident can occur any day at any time, while you are work, school, at the gym, while out to dinner, or even at home, full moon or not.
The good news is, Altus Emergency Centers will always be there to care of you and your loved ones. We are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, on holidays and especially during full moons.
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