Cycling Injuries in Older People

Older people are cycling more than ever and they can get hurt. Bicyclist are injured 7.4 times more than car drivers. The risk for the elderly is about three times greater than for the average bicyclist, and as much as six times higher for the age group 75 - 84 years. We need more recreational paths that are not contaminated with cars, more cycling lanes on roads and more tolerant and careful drivers.

In Sweden, 2830 bicyclists were killed over the period 1967-96, of which 47 percent were 65 or older. The risk of dying due to bicycling was about 3.7 times greater among the elderly than among children aged 14 or under. Males showed a higher incidence of injuries and received longer periods of care than females. Older people faced a greater risk of being injured or killed.

Bicycle-related injuries among the elderly - a new epidemic? R Ekman, G Welander, L Svanstrom, L Schelp, P Santesson.Public Health, 2001, Vol 115, Iss 1, pp 38-43Address Ekman R, WHO Secretariat, Dept Publ Hlth Sci, SE-53380 Gotene, SWEDEN

Checked 10/9/14

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