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Epidemiological profile of hospitalised injuries among electric bicycle riders admitted to a rural hospital in Suzhou: a cross-sectional study


Police reports indicate an increasing burden of electric bike (E-bike) casualties in China; however, hospitalised injury data have not been reported. The aim of the present work was to describe hospitalised injury patterns for E-bikers involved in road crashes and explore injury risk disparities among them. For the period October 2010 to April 2011, this cross-sectional study retrospectively collected information for hospitalised E-bikers involved in road crashes from hospital records, in Suzhou China, using the International Classification of Diseases, 10th revision (ICD-10) injury diagnosis codes. Injury nature and body region were further categorised using ICD-10 codes. Multivariate logistic regression was used to assess the risk of specific injury types. We found that hospitalised E-biker injuries (n=323) accounted for 57.2% of road traffic hospitalisations over the 6-month study period. The average age, length of stay and hospitalisation cost were 43.8 years, 10.0 days and ¥8229 (US$1286), respectively. Fractures and head injuries were common. The odds of traumatic brain injuries were significantly elevated for night-time E-bike crashes and incidents other than colliding with motor vehicles. These findings confirm E-bike injuries as an important population health problem and identify elevated injury odds in different E-biker groups. Future injury prevention initiatives should include encouraging helmet use among E-bikers.

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