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NHTSA Says Lower Extremities Most Common Rider Injury, Who Knew?

motorcycleriderleg.jpegSeveral years ago, the United States Department of Transportation, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, studied a less publicized area of interest for rider safety: the “lower-extremity injuries among motorcyclists within the context of overall trends in motorcycle injuries and fatalities.” Representing bike riders as an Atlanta, Georgia motorcycle injury lawyer, the results of the study track with my own experience with my clients’ bike accident injuries.

This study enabled experts to review the medical costs involved in these injuries, as well as the long term disabilities that can result. Using motorcycle crash information that was taken from a sampling system that spanned the years from 1997 to 2006, the study’s report used various statistics gleaned from fatality tracking and trauma centers to spot the trends.

The analysis revealed an interesting fact. What it found was that lower-extremity injuries were in fact the most common injuries sustained by motorcyclists treated at lower-level trauma centers. The next most common injuries were upper-extremity and head injuries. In future posts, we will continue to talk with readers about the importance of helmet use in Georgia and the studies done in the area of head trauma and injury.

Just as important is the information that revealed something we all know intuitively perhaps — although the lower-extremity injuries occurred more often, it was injuries to the head, chest, and abdominal injuries that actually tended to be more severe.

Not surprisingly perhaps, motorcyclists sustain more leg injuries than any other type of lower-extremity injury. Specifically, statistics indicate that bike riders are more likely to have bone fractures than soft-tissue injuries.

In the years studied, about 80 percent of those riders who suffered isolated lower-extremity injuries were discharged home after acute hospital visits. A lower percentage, about 45 percent went home after acute care for these injuries in combination with others.

The median charges for hospital visits was about $20,745 which increased to $38,608 per patient when multiple lower-extremity injuries were involved. The cost jumped to over $55,000 when riders sustained lower-extremity in combination with other injuries.

Click this link to review the entire report, Lower-Extremity Injuries in Motorcycle Crashes.

Charles Scholle is a Gwinnett County motorcycle injury and accident lawyer, providing a free consultation to evaluate any motorcycle accident matter. Please contact our law firm at any time.

Our law practice focuses on helping clients recover from injuries due to motorcycle, car and truck accidents. Our offices in around the Atlanta area, include Buckhead, Decatur and the Perimeter. We serve clients throughout Georgia.