A recent analysis of medical records of motorcycle crash patients previously seen at the University of Wisconsin Hospital (UWH) points to just how important wearing a helmet can be to preventing the most severe types of neck injuries.
As part of their investigation, researchers at UWH scrutinized the records of at least 1,000 patients who'd been seen at their facility after a motorcycle crash between 2010 and 2015. They published their findings in the Journal of Neurosurgery: Spine just a few days ago.
Although a state like California requires that all motorcyclists wear helmets in order to operate their bikes, Wisconsin only requires those 17 and younger to do so. Nearly 70 percent of patients seen post-crash in Wisconsin had reportedly not been wearing a helmet at the time they were involved in their accidents.
Of the patients seen at UWH, those who'd not been wearing a helmet at the time of their crash apparently suffered neck injures 15 percent more often than their helmet-wearing counterparts. At least 11 percent were diagnosed as having fractured their spines as a result of not having worn a helmet.
When motorcyclists they reviewed records for did wear helmets, their risk of suffering a neck injury appeared to decline by more than .5 percent to 7 percent. The incidence rate of helmeted motorcyclists suffering spinal fractures declined to as little as 5 percent.
This data led researchers to conclude that nonhelmet-wearing motorcyclists are two times more apt to endure a neck injury in a motorcycle crash than those who actually wear them.
An earlier study, conducted at the same facility, left researchers thinking that a helmet's weight had a lot to do with how severe of a neck injury that a motorcyclist would end up with. This new research suggests that any helmet may be helpful in minimizing a biker's risk of this type of injury.
If you've suffered either a severe neck injury or fractured spine while out riding your motorbike, then a San Bernardino attorney can advise you as to your eligibility to recover medical costs and other expenses.