The risk of motor vehicle crashes and traffic citations post stroke: a structured review.


BACKGROUND Stroke impacts the domains known to be important for driving and is a primary condition for driving evaluation referrals. Given the high prevalence of stroke, the objective was to summarize the evidence regarding risk of crashes and traffic citations post stroke. METHODS A structured review of six databases was conducted to retrieve studies that included stroke as a separate exposure from other disorders and measured crashes or traffic citations as an outcome. RESULTS Four cohort and three case-control studies met the inclusion criteria. Five of the seven studies found increased odds or risk ratios ranging from 1.9 to 7.7, while two found an association of 0.8. Only one result was statistically significant (RR=2.7). One study examined the outcome traffic citations and found no significant association. CONCLUSION There is cause for concern regarding increased risk of crashes post stroke. Future studies that examine the impact of stroke severity and sequelae will help health professionals, families, and those with stroke make informed decisions regarding driving post stroke. This review indicates that drivers with stroke have an increased risk of crashing compared to their counterparts without stroke, as demonstrated by increased risk estimates in five out of the seven studies that have examined this issue. This review also points to an urgent need for rigorous studies investigating the risk of crashes according to specific stroke sequelae: an understanding of crash risk based on stroke severity, impairments, and function will assist clinicians in making informed decisions regarding the need for comprehensive driving evaluation and the potential for driver retraining for specific subgroups.

DOI: 10.1310/tsr1703-191

Cite this paper

@article{Perrier2010TheRO, title={The risk of motor vehicle crashes and traffic citations post stroke: a structured review.}, author={Marie-Jos{\'e}e Perrier and Nicol Korner-Bitensky and Anita Petzold and Nancy E. Mayo}, journal={Topics in stroke rehabilitation}, year={2010}, volume={17 3}, pages={191-6} }