Local 12: Head injury survivor, doctor share importance of wearing helmet

Local 12 spoke with patient Shane Shapiro and the University of Cincinnati's Laura Ngwenya about the importance of wearing a helmet following Shapiro's traumatic brain injury and recovery.

Shapiro needed several brain surgeries and months of rehab following a scooter accident while he was not wearing a helmet.

"This was one of those accidents and injuries that are often fatal, and I’m so happy that Shane’s made it through and is able to talk to us today and tell us about the importance of wearing a helmet," said Ngwenya, MD, PhD, associate professor and director of neurotrauma in the Department of Neurosurgery in UC's College of Medicine and a UC Gardner Neuroscience Institute neurosurgeon.

Ngwenya said especially in the spring, her team sees a number of head injuries from people not wearing helmets while riding bicycles, scooters, skateboards and motorcycles. Both Ngwenya and Shapiro encouraged folks to wear a helmet every time, as it could save lives.

"It really is a public health problem," Ngwenya said. "When someone is not wearing a helmet, that injury oftentimes is fatal. A helmet can save lives. It’s the difference between having an injury where it’s a milder injury and having one where you need a surgery and you’re in a coma and you maybe don’t survive."

Watch the Local 12 segment. (Note: Segment begins around 28:40 mark.)

Featured photo at top of a bike rider wearing a helmet. Photo/Iris Wang/Unsplash.

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