Moncton’s head oncologist ‘lucky to be alive’ after cycling accident

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WATCH ABOVE; “I am lucky to be alive” says Moncton’s head oncologist Dr. Mohammed Harb – Jun 30, 2016

The Moncton Hospital’s head oncologist says he’s lucky to be alive.

Dr. Mohammed Harb suffered a brain injury after he was struck by a car while cycling along Shediac Road on April 17. Now, he’s sharing how the accident has changed him and his family and says he’s urging others to wear helmets, which he says ultimately saved his life.

READ MORE: Moncton cyclists call for more and improved bike lanes

“I have to say that I am very lucky to be alive,” said Harb.

Harb says while out for a ride with his wife and a fellow physician, he was struck from behind by a 97-year-old driver who veered off the road.

“The guy just hit me from the back and I flew above the car. I broke [the] windshield and actually I broke the top of the car.”
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He says the impact with the car was so severe he stopped breathing, his helmet was shattered and he suffered a severe brain bleed.

His wife Rita, who witnessed the accident, says it all felt like a bad dream.

“I think I was just screaming and it was scary,” she said. “And actually I could not believe it was happening.”

Harb’s friend, Dr. Ali Benjellow, perfomed CRP and revived him on scene.

“Dr. Benjelloun brought me back to life…he is my angel.”

Harb says he spent weeks recovering in the hospital, wondering if he’d every practice medicine again.

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“The assessment showed that my brain is not working properly, it showed that it was working around 30 per cent below average and for a physician this is a big thing,” said Harb.

As the head of oncology at the Moncton hospital, Dr. Harb dedicates his life to saving the lives of hundreds of cancer patients from across the province. He credits his helmet with saving his life, which is why he’s now urging all cyclists to wear protective head gear.

“This is a life-saver, without this you should not sit on your bike,” Harb said, clutching the damaged helmet he says saved his life. His wife agrees.

“It’s a must, everybody must wear a helmet. His friend saved his life too, but without a helmet he would be dead. I am sure,” Rita said.

It will be months before Dr. Harb is cleared by his physicians to ride his bike on the road again.

And while Dr. Harb is still only able to work part time, his brain has miraculously made a full recovery.

“I have four kids four amazing kids and my lovely wife and I have my patients and I love to look after them. And I think that is why I stayed alive”