Pattern of Motorcycle Accident-Associated Injuries in Port Harcourt – A Hospital-Based Study
AbstractObjective: To document some of the determinants and types of motorcycle-accident associated injuries in patients attending a private orthopaedic practice in Port Harcourt.
Method: This is a 12 month prospective study starting March 2001. Relevant data was collected by the attending surgeon in a questionnaire previously prepared for the purpose. Frequency distribution tables were generated manually from this data.
Results: One hundred and eighty six (186) road accident victims were seen out of which 47.3% were motorcycle accidents. The peak age of the victims was 20 – 39years and these made up 68.2% of the patients. The male/female ratio was 2:1. All 26 cyclists in the series were males; and pillion passengers were at the greatest risk of being injured.
Most of the injuries occurred between Friday and Saturday (40.91%), and during the rainy season (47.7%). The largest proportion of the accidents occurred in the Diobu area Port Harcourt (28.4%).
Most cases presented in the hospital immediately or after attention in other medical facilities (76.1%), while 23.9% sought traditional bonesetters' help before presenting. The latter group often presented as late as a week after the injury.
Injuries to the extremities constituted the bulk of the injuries (54.3%). Motorcycle-car collisions were the commonest mechanism of injury (56.8%), while indirect or secondary injuries were commonest types (59.1%) of injuries.
Conclusion: Motorcycle accidents cause a high proportion of road accident related injuries presenting to the Rehoboth Specialist Hospital, Port Harcourt.
Recommendation: Safety precaution is still the gold standard for prevention of motorcycle accident related injuries.
Key Words: Motorcycle, Cyclists, Pillion riders, Pedestrians
Orient Journal of Medicine Vol.15(1&2) 2003: 36-40