Monday, September 26, 2022 (HealthDay News) — A new study suggests that cycling while stoning leads to thousands of serious accidents each year.
Researchers found that between 2019 and 2020 alone, more than 11,000 people in US emergency rooms were treated for injuries that occurred while riding a bicycle while taking methamphetamine, marijuana or opioids.
It is possible that people affected by these injuries have been injured substance use disorderthey may be more prone to homelessness and may not have access to other types of transportation,” explained lead researcher Bart Hammig, professor of public health at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. bicycle accidents. “
One way to reduce these accidents, he said, is to get these drug users off their bikes.
“Better and easier access to transportation for people who may use bicycles as their main mode of transportation is essential to help prevent injuries among this population,” he said. “In addition to treating injuries, drug referral systems should be readily available in emergency departments.”
Hammig and his University of Arkansas colleague Robert Davis, assistant professor of public health, found that cyclists who crashed while high often suffered more serious injuries than those who did not use drugs.
Most of those affected are men (86%), according to the study. Of these, 22% had a broken bone. 19% affected internal organs; And nearly 33% were hospitalized. In all, 1% had a concussion.
Some of them likely resulted in deaths, but because the data came from emergency room records, the researchers were unable to report deaths.
They were the most common drugs found methamphetamine (36%); Marijuana (32%); And the opiates (19%). The study found that nearly a quarter of the injured cyclists were drinking alcohol.
In the study, the researchers used data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System. Of the more than 480,000 injuries reported between 2019 and 2020, about 3% were due to drugs.
Dr. Eugene Forsman, MD, an emergency room physician at Long Island Jewish Medical Center in New Hyde Park, New York, said that rocking a bike can greatly increase the risk of collision and serious injury.
He suspects that the number of accidents identified in the study is just the tip of the iceberg.
“Because of the limited data, this study underestimates the actual risk of injury, as well as the severity of injury associated with any intoxicant,” Forsman said. “Even with the data available, it is clear that the risk of infection is high.”
Forssmann said more study is needed to learn about basic transmission bikes and to find ways to reduce risks.
Some examples include evaluating social factors that influence health to better allocate resources. He said improving access to public transportation, improving roadside safety procedures and educating about the dangers of operating any mode of transportation under the influence are key.
“Adequate education allows patients to better understand their injury risk and can provide a safer route for themselves as well as other cyclists,” Würzmann said.
The study was recently published online in Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs.
For more information about drug abuse, visit United States Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
SOURCES: Bart Hammig, Ph.D., MA in Public Health, Professor, Health, Human Performance and Recreation, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville; Eugene Forsman, emergency room physician, Long Island Jewish Medical Center, New Hyde Park, New York; Journal of Studies on Alcohol and DrugsAugust 1, 2022
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