Driving behaviour after brain injury: a follow-up of accident rate and driving patterns 6-9 years post-injury.
Anne-Kristine Schanke, Per-Ola Rike, Anette Mølmen, Per Egil Østen
Objective: A follow-up of accident rate and driving patterns of patients 6–9 years after brain injury.
Design: Postal questionnaire sent to patients with brain injury who were assessed consecutively in the period 1997–2000 and who were re-issued. Subjects: A total of 93 persons, 69 men and 24 women, mean age 57 years, average 9 years post-injury, 65 persons with brain injury after cerebrovascular accidents and 28 with traumatic brain injury.
Methods: The questionnaire covered self-reported driving accidents pre- and post-injury, yearly distance driven, behaviour in traffic and self-reported care taken in driving.
Results: The cerebrovascular accident group had reduced their driving significantly post-injury and had also changed their driving patterns. No significant changes were found in distance driven and driving patterns for the group with traumatic brain injury. Compared with normative data, reported accidents post-injury in the cerebrovascular accident group showed no increased accident rate, while the accident rate in the traumatic brain injury-group was more than 2 times higher.
Conclusion: Patients with traumatic brain injury represent a risk group for accidents post-injury, while those with brain injury after cerebrovascular accidents do not. Possible causes for this difference are discussed.
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