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Resident's Forum
July 2012

Association Between Helmets and Facial Injury After a Motorcycle CollisionAn Analysis of More Than 40 000 Patients From the National Trauma Data Bank

Author Affiliations
 

SECTION EDITORS: RICHARD D. SCHULICK, MD, MBA; PAMELA A. LIPSETT, MD, MHPE

Author Affiliations: Department of Surgery, UCLA (University of California, Los Angeles) School of Medicine (Dr Crompton); Department of Surgery, Howard University College of Medicine, Washington, DC (Drs Oyetunji and Cornwell); Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Department of Health Policy and Management, Center for Injury Research and Policy (Dr Pollack), and the Department of Surgery, The Johns Hopkins University, School of Medicine (Drs Stevens, Efron, Haut, and Haider), Baltimore, Maryland.

Arch Surg. 2012;147(7):674-676. doi:10.1001/archsurg.2012.894
Abstract

Motorcycle collisions are increasing at a precipitous rate, and reliable and valid data regarding all aspects of helmet safety are needed to better inform ongoing debates on mandatory helmet laws. The objective of this study was to determine the effect of motorcycle helmets on the likelihood of a facial injury after motorcycle collisions, using data from the National Trauma Data Bank, version 7.0, on 46 362 patients from January 1, 2002, through December 31, 2006. Multiple logistic regression was used to analyze the independent association between helmets and facial injury with adjustment for potential confounders. Helmeted motorcyclists were less likely to suffer facial injuries after a motorcycle collision, with a lower adjusted odds ratio of facial injury (0.40; 95% CI, 0.37-0.43) and a lower prevalence of specific types of facial injury compared with their nonhelmeted counterparts.

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