Male teenagers with disruptive behaviour disorders (like ADHD), a new study warns, are at higher risk of being seriously injured in traffic accidents, either as drivers or pedestrians.
Male teenagers are the single most risky population group of drivers with twice the collision rate of the general population, said the study by Dr. Donald Redelmeier and his colleagues at the University of Toronto.
For the 7-year study, the researchers compared 3,421 male teenagers, aged between 16 and 19 years, admitted to Ontario hospitals due to road crashes to a control group of 3,812 male teens admitted for appendicitis.
A history of disruptive behaviour disorders was more frequent among male teenagers admitted for road traffic crashes than controls (767 of 3421 v 664 of 3812) giving an odds ratio of 1.37.
The authors suggested that disruptive behaviour disorders could be considered as contributors to road traffic crashes, similar to epilepsy, diabetes, and some other medical diseases.
"Greater attention by primary care physicians, psychiatrists, and community health workers might be helpful since practical recommendations might reduce the risk," concluded the authors.
The findings are published in this week's PLoS Medicine.