8 10 2012

Motor Cycle Collisions.

Keeping in mind that I was on the trauma service in the summer, I saw a lot of patients involved in MCCs.  These are the tales of just a few of the unluckiest ones:

  1. Once upon a time, a sober woman climbed onto the back of a motorcycle with her drunk-off-his-tush husband.  Why she would do such a thing remains a mystery, because the last I heard she was still in a coma with a traumatic brain injury.  Her husband blacked out from the alcohol and doesn’t remember, either.  When he learned what had happened to his wife, he tried to kill himself.
  2. Once upon a time, there lived a man who was a leader in a major corporation based out of the country, and he was visiting here on business.  The weather was nice, and he rented a motorcycle instead of a car—primarily because he rode a motorcycle at home as well.  He wound up swerving off the road in a construction area, went off an embankment, and his aorta was torn.  Dead before he even reached the hospital.  The trauma surgeon had to call the man’s family and tell them that their loved one was dead.  I can’t imagine how horrible it would be to make that call.
  3. Once upon a time, a mildly intoxicated man hit an unexpected bump in the road, and lost control of the motorcycle.  The bike threw him with such force, that when he hit the ground, his aorta was actually sheared off of his left atrium.  All that the trauma team did was pronounce him dead.
  4. Once upon a time, a man with two arms and two legs went for a motorcycle ride.  He crashed into the side of a car, was thrown, another car ran over his foot, which had to be amputated.  Later, the man with two arms, two legs, and one foot went for a motorcycle ride.  Again, he swerved into a car and was thrown.  Now he has one arm that ends above the elbow, one leg, and no feet.
  5. Once upon a time, a woman was tipsy and went for a joyride on her friend’s motorcycle because, as her husband told it, she was too cautious to get one of her own.  The woman lost control of the bike.  Both of her legs, her hip, and one upper arm all were broken, the other side of her hip was dislocated, and her neck (C2-C3) was broken.
  6. Once upon a time, a man on a motorcycle was frustrated in rush-hour traffic.  He accelerated to 80 on the left shoulder to skirt around the cars, got a little too cavalier, and scraped his left ankle up through the knee and part of the thigh along the concrete median. Nasty scrapes that revealed bone (I saw the pictures) and eventually needed to be covered with a series of skin grafts.
  7. Once upon a time, a drunk man lost control of his motorcycle, crashed, and remained brain-dead on a ventilator in the ICU for over 100 days before his family let him go.
  8. Once upon a time, a woman and her boyfriend were thrown from a motorcycle that he was driving.  Her pelvis was fractured so badly that it looked as if the two sides were attached by a hinge (also known as an ‘open-book pelvis’).

There were more, I’m sure, that either I wasn’t on call for or that were not critical enough to be admitted to the surgery service.

Moral of the story:  Motorcycles may make you feel like a bad-ass, but to me, it just doesn’t seem worth the risk.




One response

9 10 2012

(I’d like to add)…alcohol makes you feel like a badass, but to me it just doesn’t seem worth the risk

So, what do you think?

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