Twelve-month health outcomes for bicyclists and car occupants after a non-catastrophic traffic crash injury

Bamini Gopinath*, Jagnoor Jagnoor, Annette Kifley, Ilaria Pozzato, Michael Dinh, Ashley Craig, Ian D. Cameron

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: In this inception cohort study, we investigated differences in health outcomes for bicyclists (cyclists) and car occupants (car driver and passengers) at 12 months after a non-catastrophic traffic injury. We also aimed to determine the independent predictors of key health outcomes among cyclists. Methods: Of the 2019 participants at baseline, 299 were cyclists and 927 were car occupants; 229 cyclists and 489 car occupants were followed up 12 months after the injury. A telephone-administered questionnaire was used to obtain information on socio-economic, pre-injury health and injury-related characteristics. The survey also included tools on health outcomes: quality of life (SF-36 and EQ-5D-3L scales), pain severity, general psychological distress, trauma-related distress and pain catastrophizing. Results: After adjusting for all potential confounders, general psychological distress scores and trauma-related distress scores were 2.05 and 0.60 units lower for cyclists than car occupants (P = 0.01 and P < 0.0001, respectively) at 12-month follow-up. Cyclists showed greater improvement than car occupants over 12 months in mean pain severity ratings and SF-12 physical component summary (PCS) score (both P < 0.0001) but had lower mean pain severity and similar PCS scores at baseline. However, cyclists showed less improvement in SF-12 mental component summary (MCS) scores (P = 0.03) than car occupants but had higher mean MCS scores at baseline. Pre-injury and baseline quality-of-life scores and pain catastrophizing as well as injury involving the head or face were significant predictors of overall psychological functioning, general psychological distress and trauma-related distress in cyclists at 12 months. Conclusions: Cyclists demonstrated better recovery than car occupants at 12 months after sustaining a traffic crash injury. Prognostic indicators of long-term physical functioning and psychological well-being in cyclists were related to pre-injury and baseline quality of life and pain factors and injury location.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101368
Pages (from-to)1-8
Number of pages8
JournalAnnals of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine
Issue number2
Early online date12 Mar 2020
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • cyclists
  • car occupants
  • traffic injury
  • health outcomes


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