A Study on Injury Patterns of Motorcyclists Met with Traffic Accidents

K. K. N. Fernando, S. R. Hulathduwa, C. A. D. Nahallage


Injuries following road traffic accidents (RTA) are recognized as a man-madehealth hazard across the globe. This is also the common knowledge of any surgeonworking in any busy hospital.

The general objective of this study was to identify the injury patterns anddemographic characteristics such as age, gender, ethnicity and educational level ofmotor-bike victims of RTAs. As specific objectives, the injury types, subtypes,commonly affected body parts, the outcome of injuries, the level of medicalinterventions needed, the category of hurt, the causative, contributing and predisposingfactors for accidents have been studied in depth. The study was carried out at theAccident Service Unit of the Colombo South Teaching Hospital-Kalubowila for aperiod of six months using 100 motorcyclists. The ethical clearance was granted by theEthical Review Committee of the Medical Faculty. A researcher administered structuredinterview was held with each participant. Medical data were obtained from the BedHead Ticket (BHT) of the patients.

Some major findings of the study: Mostly affected age group was 21-40yrs (86%).Males were mostly affected (94%). Most accidents occurred on week days and duringday time. Most common side of collision was frontal (head-on). Fractures were thecommonest type of injuries (79%) followed by abrasions (76%), contusions (56%) andlacerations (10%). Head injuries were encountered by 35% of victims. It was claimedthat helmets were worn by 95%. The lower limbs were the most commonly affectedbody part (41%). Most victims needed fracture management (79%), wound toileting(76%) and suturing (10%). Only 04% needed critical surgical interventions. Overspeeding(33%), overtaking from wrong side (18%), careless disobedience to road ruleswere the commonly accepted triggers. Consumption of alcohol was a contributory factorin a minority.

Key words: Traffic injuries, Motorcyclists, Accidents, Casualties, Head injuries

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