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WHOOPS! How staying still gave WA mountain bike rider Andrew Mann asecond chance at life (Australia)

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Old January 11th 18, 04:30 AM posted to alt.mountain-bike
Mike Vandeman[_4_]
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Default WHOOPS! How staying still gave WA mountain bike rider Andrew Mann asecond chance at life (Australia)


How staying still gave WA mountain bike rider Andrew Mann a second chance at life

Claire Tyrrell
Wednesday, 10 January 2018 12:30PM
Claire TyrrellIf Andrew Mann had decided to get up after his crash, he may never have walked again.Pictu Facebook

Andrew Mann knows he has been given a second chance at life.

The Margaret River mountain biker could be in a wheelchair if things had played out differently two years ago.

Mr Mann, 44, was riding with his friends on trails near his house in November 2015 when he lost control and crashed.

“I was going down a trail I had been down many times before ... I went down a berm and there was a double jump, I was going way too fast,” he said.

“I cleared the double jump and landed on the ground and slid into a log. The last thing I remember was putting my hands down.”

Mr Mann folded over himself and compressed his spine, shattering a bone in his back, bursting a lung and rupturing his liver. Coughing up blood but still able to move his legs, he thought he had broken ribs.

With his friends at his side and an ambulance on its way, Mr Mann’s instinct was to get up and walk. “My friends told me, ‘No mate, stay still’ * I still did not think I had done anything to my spine,” he said.

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Hospital scans revealed he had broken his T7 vertebrae , so he was taken to Royal Perth Hospital by the Royal Flying Doctor Service. After a seven-hour operation to fuse his spine, Mr Mann’s surgeon told him he was lucky to be walking.

“My doctor told me nine out of 10 people don’t walk away from an injury like this,” he said.

“I could have been a paraplegic * he told me if I had tried to stand up (after the crash) it would have been a different story. My doctors said my injuries were consistent with a motorbike crash. I was going about 30km/h.”
Andrew Mann is now back on his bike.Pictu Steve Ferrier, The West Australian

Mr Mann said he was eternally grateful to his friends and his wife Louise for not letting him move after he crashed.

He said people should always assume a person has a spinal injury in a severe crash, for the best chance at recovery.

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