There’s good news and bad news about bike riding head injury in America. These accidents have dropped dramatically among children but have scarcely changed among the rising number of adult bike riders.
Bike Related Head Injuries Have Declined In Children, But There Is A Spike In Adults
A recent study found that between 2009 and 2018, increased helmet usage, the installation of designated bike paths in cities, and other safety measures significantly decreased bike-related traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), especially in children aged 10 to 14.
According to a team headed by Kelly Sarmiento, the rate of emergency room visits for bicycle-related TBIs declined by about half [48.7 per cent] among children and 5.5 per cent among adults. She works for the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, which is part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the United States.
Over the last decade, the declines in bike-related head injuries among children have been nine times greater than those observed in adult bicyclists.
Sarmiento and her colleagues observed that an increasing number of adults are foregoing automobiles in favor of bicycling, with often disastrous consequences.
Adult bicycle-related fatalities have risen dramatically in recent years, according to researchers. In the United States in 2018, 857 adult bicyclists were killed in car accidents, the largest number in 2 decades.
Between 2009 and 2018, almost 600,000 emergency room visits in the United States were for bike-related TBIs, according to the latest survey.
Sarmiento’s team emphasized that perhaps the vast majority of patients who suffered a TBI, which was around 83 percent, were treated and discharged from the emergency room.
Despite the fact that all of these people recovered well, others have continued to suffer from effects that have emotional, mental, behavioral, and educational implications, according to the researchers.
Gender appeared to be essential as well. The rate of emergency room visits for bicycle-related TBIs was three times higher among males of all ages during the study period, according to the CDC researchers. According to the report, boys and men were even more likely than girls and women to die in a bike crash.
More bicycling safety education, particularly for men, according to the researchers, is required. Two ambulance doctors who had nothing to do with the latest research decided that something needed to be done.
Suppose the study found that youngsters had a much sharper decline in bicycle-related TBIs than adults. In that case, they should not become careless and abandon attempts to solve this critical public health problem, according to Dr Robert Glatter, who works in Lenox Hill Hospital, NYC.
He claims that bicycling is the leading cause of Emergency Room visits for traumatic brain injury in the United States.The danger to adults is particularly severe.
With a growing number of adults riding to work in both urban and rural environments and the traffic in bike lanes, the possibility of not only TBIs but also multi-system trauma is a fact, according to Glatter. He also mentioned the possibility of severe and life-threatening chest and abdominal injuries, such as long bone, pelvic, and rib fractures.
Dr Teresa Murray Amato believes that the encouraging decrease in children’s TBIs is the product of a mass educational campaign by pediatricians to ensure that parents recognize the importance of helmet use when their children are biking. She is the director of emergency medicine in Long Island Jewish Forest Hills Hospital, NYC.
However, while biking can be an enjoyable and successful way to work out, Amato points out that certain safety concerns must be addressed.
Glatter added that there is one new threat to acknowledge. He claims that the recent surge in popularity of e-bikes has resulted in a rise in the severity of accidents, owing primarily to higher speeds. E-bikes are often usually heavier than standard bikes, which can result in more serious accidents due to their weight alone during crashes and falls.