Prevention is the best treatment

Some injuries can have devastating consequences. That's why it's important to have your children wear seatbelts and bike helmets to protect their fragile brains.

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Lifestyle

September 14, 2021 - 11:38 AM

Heather Breitenstein and Travis Sigg learn about bicycle helmets from Dave Fontaine. The Allen County Multi-Agency Team (ACMAT) received 100 helmets from Kansas Safe Kids, and gave away several at Saturday’s event. Photo by Vickie Moss / Iola Register

What I remember most is the silence.

Debra Johnston, M.D. Courtesy photo

She was 19 years old, just starting her first semester of college. She had been transferred to our level 1 trauma center, intubated and in a medically induced coma. I was a third-year medical student, being introduced to the realities of medicine. Our team was clustered around her in the procedure room adjacent to the ICU while my senior resident inserted the central line we would use to quickly administer large volumes of medicine and fluids.  

The neurosurgery team was solemn. They’d reviewed her CT scan. The pressure of the blood accumulating inside her skull had forced the base of her brain downward, into the space usually occupied only by the top of the spinal cord. We stared at each other in silence. We’d already lost the battle. 

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