WEDNESDAY, Dec. 21, 2022 (HealthDay News) — The incidence of bicycle-related injuries decreased from 2012 to 2021, but the rate increased among the elderly, according to a study published online Dec. 21 in the Journal of Orthopedic Research.

Charles A. Johnson, M.D., from the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, and colleagues characterized trends in bicycle-related injuries using data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System from 2012 to 2021.

From 2012 to 2021, the researchers identified an estimated 4,666,491 bicycle-related injuries. Over time, there was a significant decrease in the incidence of these injuries (R = –0.983). However, over time, the rate of injury in elderly patients increased. Injuries occurred most often in the summer months and on weekend days (36 and 31.9 percent, respectively). Injuries were more common in younger patients and males. The most commonly injured body part was the head among all age groups; upper-extremity injuries occurred more often than lower-extremity injuries. The most common injury type was fractures.

“While bicycle-related injuries have decreased over time, in recent years there is an increasing rate of injuries in older patients, especially head injuries and fractures,” Johnson said in a statement. “The results of our study highlight the importance of bicycle safety initiatives and helmet wearing regardless of patient age.”

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