ADHD

Updated 04 July 2014

Men with ADHD need medication when driving

According to a Swedish study, adult men with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder may avoid traffic accidents if they take their prescribed medication.

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Adult men with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder may avoid traffic accidents if they take their prescribed medication, according to a Swedish study.

The study found that men with ADHD were 45 percent more likely to get into road crashes due to inattentiveness and impulsiveness than men without the disorder.

But they managed to cut their risk of road accidents by almost half when taking stimulant drugs prescribed by their doctors, said the findings in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) Psychiatry.

Very serious consequences

Some 41 percent of accidents involving men with ADHD could have been avoided if they had received medication for the entire four-year follow-up period, it said.

"Even though many people with ADHD are doing well, our results indicate that the disorder may have very serious consequences," said Henrik Larsson, associate professor at the department of medical epidemiology and biostatistics of Karolinska Institutet in Sweden.

"The risk of transport accidents in adult men with ADHD decreases markedly if their condition is treated with medication."

Benefits of medication

Researchers looked at a study population of 17,000 people, including women, but were unable to find statistically significant data on women, ADHD and car crashes.

The study urged doctors to consider advising ADHD patients of the risk of car accidents and the potential benefits of medication.

Experts say around two percent of adults suffer from ADHD, which involves impulsive behaviour and difficulty concentrating.

The study was funded by the Swedish Research Council and National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.

Read more:

ADHD in adults?

Assessment of ADHD

What's up with Ritalin?

 

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ADHD Expert

Dr Renata Schoeman has been in full-time private practice as a general psychiatrist (child, adolescent and adult psychiatry) since 2008, currently based in Oude Westhof (Bellville). Renata also holds appointments as senior lecturer in Leadership (USB) and as a virtual faculty member of USB Executive Development’s Neuroleadership programme. She serves on the advisory boards of various pharmaceutical companies, as a director of the Psychiatric Management Group (PsychMG) and is the co-convenor of the South African Society of Psychiatrist (SASOP) special interest group for adult ADHD, and co-founder of the Goldilocks and The Bear Foundation (www.gb4adhd.co.za) She is passionate about corporate mental health awareness and uses her neuroscience background to assist leaders in equipping them to become balanced, healthy and dynamic leaders that take their own and their team’s emotional, intellectual, social health and physical needs into account. Renata is academically active and enjoys research and collaborative work, has published in many peer-reviewed journals, and has presented at local and international congresses. She is regularly invited to present at conferences and to engage with the media. During her post-graduate studies, she trained at Harvard, Boston in neurocognition and neuroimaging. Her awards include, amongst others, the Young Minds in Psychiatry award from the American Psychiatric Association, the Discovery Foundation Fellowship award, a Thuthuka award from the NRF, and a MRC Fellowship. She also received the Top MBA student award and the Director’s award from USB for 2015. She was a finalist for the Businesswomen’s Association of South Africa’s Businesswoman of the Year Award for 2016, and received the Excellence in Media Work award from SASOP during 2016.

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