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Saturday Nights In July: What To Worry About

I was reading about disease statistics today and came across some interesting information. See if you can guess the condition based on these factoids:

Time of injury:

Summer season (highest incidence in July)

Most common on the weekends (usually Saturday)

Most common at night

Average age at injury: 31.7 years old

Gender: 82% male

Number of new cases per year in the US: 10,000

So, have you guessed the condition?

Fireworks injuries perhaps? Binge drinking? Syphillis? Sasquatch attacks? Nope, guess again…

The answer is…

Spinal cord injury.

Spinal cord injuries are most often caused by motor vehicle accidents (44%), followed by violence (24%), falls (22%), sports (most are diving) 8%, and other issues 2%. The most common level of injury is in the neck, resulting in paralysis of all four limbs.

Why should we be worried about Saturday nights in July? Because that’s when people are at the highest risk for spinal cord injuries. School’s out, drinking and partying commence, and young men (more commonly than women) may drive while intoxicated and crash their cars. Please be careful this summer everyone, no one thinks they’ll be in an accident, until it’s too late.This post originally appeared on Dr. Val’s blog at

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