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April 5, 2011

Family issues statement on Krasnopoler's condition

The family of Nathan Krasnopoler, the 20-year-old Johns Hopkins student who was struck by a car while bicycling near the university in February, is reporting Tuesday that doctors now have "no hope of a meaningful recovery."

The family's statement, which follows an earlier email from a Hopkins dean to the university community, said physicians have determined that the damage to Krasnopoler's brain is permanent and that he is "not expected to regain any cognitive function."

The statement does not say that Krasnopoler has no brain activity or all or that death is imminent, but it leaves little hope that he will regain consciousness after the Feb. 26 collision with a car driven by an 83-year-old woman who was making a right turn into a driveway off University Parkway.


According to the family, Krasnopoler remains in stable condition but "remains unresponsive due to his brain injury resulting from the lack of oxygen reaching his brain, which was caused by his collapsed lungs and the delayed response due to his entrapment underneath the vehicle."

Here is the full text of the family's statement:

On Feb. 26, 2011, at approximately 11:50 a.m., Nathan Krasnopoler, a
20–year-old sophomore at The Johns Hopkins University, was lawfully riding his
bicycle in a designated bicycle lane traveling northbound on West University
Parkway towards 39th Street in Baltimore City. . A car driven by an 83-year
old woman made an illegal right turn in front of him, cutting off his lane of travel
and causing him to collide with the car, which then ran him over. Nathan’s lungs
collapsed and he stopped breathing while trapped under the vehicle for an
undetermined amount of time. Nathan was extricated by emergency services,
including Fire Department personnel who lifted the vehicle using pneumatic
lifting bags. He sustained third- and fourth-degree burns on his face and torso
from the underside of the vehicle’s engine. He also sustained bone fractures and
minor cuts and bruises. Nathan was taken by ambulance to the Emergency
Department at The Johns Hopkins Hospital in critical condition. The emergency
medical technicians reported that Nathan's heart stopped in the ambulance, but
they were able to revive him.

Initial Care

Nathan arrived at The Johns Hopkins Hospital in a coma due to a brain
injury resulting from the lack of oxygen reaching his brain. He was in the
surgical intensive care unit until March 18, 2011. In the ICU, hospital staff
improved the overall condition of his bodily functions. There were also several
diagnostic tests on his brain function. He has had and will continue to undergo
skin surgeries to treat the severe burns.

Current Condition

Nathan remains unresponsive due to his brain injury resulting from the
lack of oxygen reaching his brain, which was caused by his collapsed lungs and
the delayed response due to his entrapment underneath the vehicle. Nathan is
now in stable condition in a hospital room at The Johns Hopkins Hospital. The
doctors have advised the family that the anoxic brain injury is severe and
widespread. According to the doctors, the brain damage that Nathan sustained as
a result of the accident appears to be permanent and he is not expected to recover
any cognitive function. Based on a series of tests, including a very recent MRI,
the doctors have no hope for a meaningful recovery.


Posted by Michael Dresser at 3:09 PM | | Comments (2)
Categories: Bicycles, On the roads


Have followed this story from the beginning and have been hoping for the best for this young cyclist. This must be extremely hard on his family and friends.
I cannot understand why the motorist at fault has not been charged. Where are the facts? There is a story here somewhere.
Bicycles are a mode of transportation. In parts of the world they are a major method of transportation. To those who vehemently deride cyclists - mature, and while you're at it try to learn some compassion for your fellow man.

Very Sad. A young life with a lot of promise lost. I have been cycling in baltimore for 6 years now and am not happy with the cycling culture here. You guys have a long way to go before cycling becomes a comfortable commuting choice. I am hoping Boston/ New York are better.

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About Michael Dresser
Michael Dresser has been an editor, reporter and columnist with The Sun longer than Baltimore's had a subway. He's covered retailing, telecommunications, state politics and wine. Since 2004, he's been The Sun's transportation writer. He lives in Ellicott City with his wife and travel companion, Cindy.

His Getting There column appears on Mondays. Mike's blog will be a forum for all who are interested in highways, transit and other transportation issues affecting Baltimore, Maryland and the region.

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