There are plenty of risks on the road, from distracted drivers to drunk drivers to poor roadway design. Are drivers with medical conditions increasing those risks even more?
They very well could be. Per the National Center for Biotechnology Information, various medical conditions have been linked to car accident risks in multiple studies. How much does the risk increase? On that, the jury is still out.
When talking about medical conditions and accidents, epilepsy is often brought up. Obviously, the thought of a driver suddenly having a seizure at 70 MPH is very frightening. However, different studies have offered very different answers.
For instance, one claimed that a driver with epilepsy was at least 1.3 times as likely to crash, and perhaps as much as 2 times as likely. Another study, though, claimed the risk was merely slightly elevated, not anywhere near twice as high, and even said that those with epilepsy shouldn't have any extra restrictions on their ability to drive.
In another study, researchers sent out a survey to see if people with cardiovascular disease were a greater risk. It studied drivers between the ages of 45 and 70. What it found was that they actually were involved in fewer accidents than those without CVD. However, even this came with a asterisk, because just 36 percent of people even bothered to respond, making for a very small sample size.
In contrast, another study in Washington targeted drivers with heart issues who were 30 years old. When looking at those with rheumatic heart disease, no significant risk increase was found. When looking at those with hypertensive disease and arteriosclerotic disease, though, the accident rates were "significantly higher."
Medical Car Accidents
As you can see, studies haven't exactly been conclusive. Even so, while the exact risk may not be known, it is clear that medical conditions could cause car accidents when a driver has an episode behind the wheel. If you're hit and injured, you may need to know how fault is determined and whether or not you can seek financial compensation.
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