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Br J Ophthalmol 93:400-404 doi:10.1136/bjo.2008.144584
  • Clinical science
    • Original Article

Visual and medical risk factors for motor vehicle collision involvement among older drivers

  1. J M Cross1,
  2. G McGwin, Jr1,2,3,
  3. G S Rubin4,5,
  4. K K Ball6,
  5. S K West7,
  6. D L Roenker8,
  7. C Owsley1
  1. 1
    Department of Ophthalmology, School of Medicine, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, Alabama, USA
  2. 2
    Department of Epidemiology, School of Public Health, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, Alabama, USA
  3. 3
    Section of Trauma, Burns, and Surgical Critical Care, Division of General Surgery, Department of Surgery, School of Medicine, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, Alabama, USA
  4. 4
    UCL Institute of Ophthalmology, London, UK
  5. 5
    NIHR Biomedical Research Centre for Ophthalmology, London, UK
  6. 6
    Department of Psychology, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, Alabama, USA
  7. 7
    Dana Center for Preventive Ophthalmology, The Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland, USA
  8. 8
    Department of Psychology, Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, Kentucky, USA
  1. Dr J M Cross, Department of Ophthalmology, School of Medicine, University of Alabama at Birmingham, 700 S. 18th Street, Suite 609, Birmingham, AL 35294-0009, USA; jmcross{at}uab.edu
  • Accepted 30 October 2008
  • Published Online First 19 November 2008

Abstract

Aims: To identify visual and medical risk factors for motor vehicle collisions (MVCs).

Methods: Data from four cohorts of older drivers from three states were pooled (n = 3158). Health information was collected at baseline, and MVC data were obtained prospectively. Cox proportional hazards regression was used to estimate rate ratios (RRs) and 95% CIs for associations between medical characteristics and MVCs.

Results: A total of 363 MVCs were observed during the study period (1990–1997), of which 145 were at fault, and 62 were injurious. Falls and impaired useful field of view (UFOV) were positively associated with overall MVCs. At-fault MVCs were also positively associated with falls and UFOV impairment, and inversely with cancer. Injurious MVCs were positively associated with arthritis and neurological disease, and inversely with hypertension.

Conclusions: These findings show similarities and differences across the risk factors for all, at-fault and injurious MVCs, and point to the need for verification and possible interventions.

Footnotes

  • Competing interests: None.

  • Ethics approval: Ethics approval was provided by the University of Alabama at Birmingham Institutional Review Board for Human Use.

  • Patient consent: Obtained.

  • UFOV is a registered trademark of Visual Awareness Inc.

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