Objective: There is little information about the long-term effects of injury on victims of motorcycle crashes. Following the repeal of the mandatory helmet law in Florida, we studied the impact of crashes on riders and their outcomes one year post-injury.
Subjects: All patients involved in a motorcycle crash over a six-month time period were assessed at one year post-injury. Demographic information, health status, motorcycle and helmet usage, and employability were surveyed.
Results: There were 94 patients evaluated at our center for the first six-month period following the repeal of the helmet law, where 50 (56%) were wearing a helmet at the time of injury. Of the 94, we were able to contact 45 (48%) at one-year follow up. Fourteen (31%) of those contacted were not wearing a helmet at the time of their crash. At one year post-injury, 23 (51%) reported physical deficits, while 39 (86%) were working. Only 12 (27%) were riding a motorcycle again, and 11 (92%) were wearing a helmet.
Conclusions: Motorcycle riders at one year post-injury continue to experience physical deficits related to their accidents. There is a small percentage of riders that resume riding a motorcycle after injury. Being involved in a motorcycle accident has deterred the injured rider from riding a motorcycle again at one year post-injury.