A retrospective study of 260 cases of motorcycle accidents which occurred over a 41/2 year period is reported. Approximately 8% died of their injuries. The vulnerability of the tibia to open fractures is noted, and the frequent association of these open injuries with severe contamination and devitalization of tissues resulting in a high complication rate. Severely comminuted intra-articular fractures of the distal tibia and radius were numerous, and one is tempted to name the injury the "motorcycle radius." Traumatic amputations were few and all involved the lower extremity. Fractures of the cervical and thoracic spine numbered only one each, but in each instance severe neurologic sequelae ensued. A plea is made for more accident prevention measures including protective equipment and driver education specific for the motorcyclist.
(C) Williams & Wilkins 1979. All Rights Reserved.