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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I'm now completing the first 24 hours in the hospital, currently in the critical care unit with my wife.

She's always having to be "reminded" to wear her helmet as she thinks it's more of a PITA than anything else. Well, while I was at work yesterday, she decided to take a ride on a level flat concrete bike path. Somehow she fell and someone ran across her and called the ambulance.

Diagnosis is a small skull fracture (if there is such a thing) and a small brain bleed. Good news is doesn't seem to be getting any worse, but she's far from feeling normal.

My message? Don't take your intended ride for granted. Don't think that just because you're not hitting the rocky trails that you don't need to wear a helmet.

Be safe out there.

Sent from my Pixel 3 XL using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Thanks for the well wishes.

Now that I'm home wanted to add something. This is not so much as to express the obvious, or what should be the obvious, but rather to point out that letting your guard down even for a moment, can lead to results that are less than desired.

I've been riding street motorcycles for over 35 years and though I almost never go out on the back roads without a full leather racing suit on, I wouldn't hesitate to throw on a helmet (because it's law) to go with my tank top and shorts, because I'm only running to the store. I'd think, "I'm only going to the store, there's no need to gear up."

Same thing when I'm only heading out to the local university campus with the family just to get out, and wouldn't where my helmet. What happened could have been me or either of my kids.

Never say, "That wouldn't happen to me"

On a positive note, the brain bleed is small and shows no signs of growing. With no insurance and an over abundance of loyalty to work, I couldn't stop her from checking out of the hospital. I totally get it, and if I wasn't able to stay at her side to make sure there's no balance or stroke like issues (plus I can keep her out of the car), I would have fought it. Choose your battles, right? She is stubborn.... hard headed one could say. She has a uncomfortable couple of weeks ahead of her.
 

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Turns right, slides left
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I hope each new day brings your wife closer to a full and speedy recovery!

You raise such an important point about never thinking "it won't happen to me". Last famous words....

Yesterday, I was testing and tuning a new shock on a green trail and out of nowhere --SMACK. I took a glancing blow from a large tree branch. More like my head hit the tree. Tall guys can probably relate. Thank goodness I had put on a helmet for that quick ride.

Blue Bicycle helmet Personal protective equipment Electric blue Helmet


Props to Troy Lee, the A2 did its job.
 

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psycho cyclo addict
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Sorry to hear and wishing your wife a speedy recovery.

It amazes me how many riders I encounter who are not wearing helmets. I've cracked three of them in the past ~20 years and wear one whenever I get on a bicycle.

I know of folks who have crashed hard and broken bones in the parking lot before starting a ride and in seemingly harmless grassy fields. It is not if it is going to happen; more WHEN.
 

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Village Idiot
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Sorry to hear about the injury, and I hope the recovery goes well.

As someone who suffered a TBI (traumatic brain injury) in a motorcycle accident, while wearing a helmet, and going down on a flat dirt trail at under 20 mph (no rocks or trees hit my head), I am extra vigilant about wearing a helmet while riding anything but an automobile.

Helmets are to protect our skulls from objects that may pierce or impact our skull bones. Motorcycle helmets (or some full-face bicycle helmets with fiberglass shells) are good for that. Bicycle helmets with very thin plastic shells are marginally ok for that. Both helmets are designed to break, further absorbing the energy that might pierce or crack skull bones.

Bruised/bleeding brains are caused by something else. When the head stops suddenly, the brain keeps moving. There is a thin shroud of fluid between the brain and the inside of the skull. When the skull stops suddenly and the brain keeps moving, that fluid is squeeze aside as the brain slams into the inside of he skull. Then injuries result - bruised brain, bleeding brain (mine did both), concussions, etc. Motorcycle helmets do very, very little to prevent this. Most bicycle helmets do virtually nothing to prevent this. What is needed is a thick layer of soft foam on the inside of the helmet. That would cause the skull to stop a little less abruptly. If helmet makers would replace the rigid foam inside most all motorcycle and bicycle helmets, then TBI's could be reduced. However, cracked or pierced skulls might increase. Everything is a compromise.

As a side note - what causes TBI's, described above, is why some boxers and football players get stupid in their old age. Because their brains have been knocked silly, too many times.

In my case, the motorcycle helmet did its job, even though there was nothing to pierce or crack my skull. But it wasn't designed to stop my brain from slamming into my skull, which is what happened. At first, I blamed the helmet. Then, in rehab, I learned what really happened (described above), and realized that no helmet on the market could have prevented my TBI.

Whenever I see a person riding a motorcycle, ATV (quad or 4-wheeler), or even a bicycle, without a helmet, all I can think is, "That person must not have a brain that is worth protecting", or "What a dumb F...". It really is that simple. And that easy to mitigate the very real risk.
 

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9 lives
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I echo others and wish your wife a speedy recovery. I am so glad it wasn't worse. With a head injury, healing takes time and can't be rushed.

I had a nasty crash while downhilling a few years ago. I was wearing body armor and a full face helmet but still managed to break multiple bones and a suffered brain bleed. The bones throughout my body mended as expected. Fortunately my brain hemorrhage was not severe and I recovered. The initial effects like dizziness, balance issues, headaches have all resolved. I dialed back on my riding style and happy to ride a couple times a week (just not downhilling per se).

I've always worn a helmet when I ride. I recently replaced my 3 year old TLD with a new A1 Classic Helmet MIPS.
 

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My wife had a big crash a couple of years ago. Full on concussion, was found on the edge of the trail by other cyclists. Nothing broken, but lots of road rash and major bruising. The biggest issue that persisted for well over a year was the effects of the concussion.

DO NOT RUSH RECOVERY!!!!!! Or downplay the lingering effects of brain trauma.

We pushed it time wise, which resulted in a crash on easy trails the resulted in further trauma and a broken elbow. This event came after multiple other rides, on much more technical trails without incident. This time, we didn't heed the warning on how she felt brainwise that particular morning, and we paid the price.
 
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