Wednesday 24th January 2018,
Continental  Hospitals Blog

Head Injury: Is it our Fate or Negligence that is costing our lives?

India is now gaining the dubious distinction of becoming a country wherein lakhs of people in their prime age of productivity (15 – 29 years age) are losing lives not due to cancers or any other serious disease – but due to their utter negligence of not putting their cars’ seat belts and helmets’ chinstraps properly.

Here we are not taking about sitting in a safe vehicle or wearing a helmet while riding a bike, but about not fastening seat belts and chinstrap of helmet. Imagine what could be the situation if we altogether don’t wear helmet and avoid fastening seatbelts even if we sit in a safe vehicle. The answer is simple; it could be a matter of life & death, living with a disability whole life or losing a loved one. For many of us this seems quite mesmerizing, but it is a fact. The following startling statistics are enough to substantiate such facts:

Worrisome Statistics

In India every year out of every one lakh people 5 people are dying due to road accidents and the main cause of death is head injury – Which means every 4 – 5 minutes one life is being lost due to head injury. According to the data compiled by the Ministry of Road Transport on highways, state roads and other highways, more than 85% of the deaths involved pedestrians, two wheelers, and cyclists. In addition, traffic accidents most commonly affect young males in the age group of 15 – 29 years (their most productive phase of life).

Two wheeler drivers are most commonly injured (75%) and many a times pillion riders suffer a lot and succumb due to road accidents. 25% of riders without wearing helmet suffer severe head injuries, in contrast only to 5% of helmeted riders. Even among helmet riders, 15% suffer critical injuries owing to the negligence in fastening chinstrap of their helmets compare to 5% head injuries in helmet riders with chinstrap fastened. And the most surprising fact about head injury is that on an average an individual spends Rs. 35,000/- on the treatment of head injury.

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Our Negligence is making us suffer

Many families who have lost their loved ones are still suffering; those who have become disabled are leading miserable lives and many youngsters who could have had achieved tremendous success are either crippled their lives or no more with us to pursue their dreams. Many a times, it is not our fate, but our negligence which is costing our lives. Being Indians we fear a lot about heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, cancer, kidney disease and so on, but don’t fear about head injury, which on most of the times claims more lives than the most other serious diseases. This can be ascertained from the fact that we wear helmet, we do not fasten chinstrap, which is equivalent to not wearing it. We sit in a car and don’t fasten seat belt, which is again utter negligence on our part. The habits like wearing helmets and fastening seat belts should get ingrained in our minds from the childhood itself to overcome our negligence.

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Bottom Line

I am still unable to come out of the horrible case of an accident victim who lost his lovely daughter and a charming son all because of his utter negligence. Had he done a simple thing at that time he could have saved his son & daughter, which was not a big deal on his part though. He came to Hyderabad along with his family and was travelling in a very safe vehicle. Unfortunately, he met with an accident and lost his daughter. The family then got shifted to Continental Hospitals. His wife who was critically injured underwent 4 surgeries and he himself underwent 13 surgeries. His son suffered massive injuries and battled with life for nearly about 45 days and at last succumbed to his injuries. We tried our level best to save the entire family – but only husband and wife survived to repent the negligence all through their lives. Had all the members of the family fastened their respective seat belts, they all would have survived as they were travelling in a safe vehicle.

Now it is high time for us to get out of our negligence and protect our lives and the lives of our loved ones. In spite of repenting the past, let us make a resolution to safeguard ourselves by preventing accidents on the occasion of “World Head Injury Awareness Day.”

To prevent road accidents become more responsible on the roads: Don’t drink and drive, respect speed limits, do not change lanes randomly; fasten seat belts; wear a proper helmet with chinstrap that gives complete protection; don’t allow kids to sit on front seat and don’t allow kids to stand on the rear seats.

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About The Author

Dr.Rajasekhar Reddy K is Consultant Spine & Neuro Surgeon at the Continental Institute of Neurosciences & Rehabilitation

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