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Pediatrics. 1996 Dec;98(6 Pt 1):1089-95.

Motor vehicle driving competencies and risks in teens and young adults with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry, University of Massachusetts Medical Center, Worcester 01655, USA.



To evaluate the motor vehicle driving knowledge, skills, and negative driving outcomes of older teens and young adults with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).


A university medical center clinic for adult ADHD.


A total of 25 young adults with ADHD and 23 young adults without ADHD 17 to 30 years old drawn from the community and equated for age, gender, and educational level.


Structured interview, behavior ratings by self- and others, video test of driving knowledge, computer simulated driving test, and official motor vehicle records.


ADHD young adults were cited more often for speeding, were more likely to have had their licenses suspended, were involved in more crashes, were more likely to have had crashes causing bodily injury, and were rated by themselves and others as using poorer driving habits. Official driving records corroborated these negative outcomes. Although no group differences in driving knowledge were evident, young adults with ADHD had more crashes, scrapes, and erratic steering during the computer-stimulated driving test than did the control subjects.


Findings supported previous research suggesting that greater driving risks are associated with ADHD and suggested that ADHD does not interfere with driving knowledge so much as with actual performance (motor control) during vehicle operation.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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