Saturday, 27 November 2010

Conduct disorder leads to road trauma

From the files of the completely bleeding obvious we are informed that boys behaving badly are more likely to be involved in motor vehicle accidents, 37% more likely according to an Ontario study
Teenage male drivers contribute to a large number of serious road crashes despite low rates of driving and excellent physical health. We examined the amount of road trauma involving teenage male youth that might be explained by prior disruptive behavior disorders (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, conduct disorder, oppositional defiant disorder).

We conducted a population-based case-control study of consecutive male youth between age 16 and 19 years hospitalized for road trauma (cases) or appendicitis (controls) in Ontario, Canada over 7 years (April 1, 2002 through March 31, 2009). Using universal health care databases, we identified prior psychiatric diagnoses for each individual during the decade before admission. Overall, a total of 3,421 patients were admitted for road trauma (cases) and 3,812 for appendicitis (controls). A history of disruptive behavior disorders was significantly more frequent among trauma patients than controls (767 of 3,421 versus 664 of 3,812), equal to a one-third increase in the relative risk of road trauma (odds ratio = 1.37, 95% confidence interval 1.22–1.54, p<0.001).
I am amused when I read terms like oppositional defiant disorder and that it is considered a psychiatric diagnosis.

Apparently naughty girls are not exempt
We... replicated our methods in girls rather than boys,... the results yielded... about the same estimated risk (odds ratio 1.31).
The editors add
The results of this study suggest that disruptive behavior disorders explain a significant amount of road traffic crashes experienced in male teenagers. Overall, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, conduct disorder, and oppositional defiant disorder are associated with about a one-third increase in the risk of a road traffic crash.
Who would have thought?

4 comments:

  1. Everything has to be studied, labelled and categorised. At times I am not sure it is at all helpful. I loved your comment about this being from the files of the completely bleeding obvious. So true that researchers sometimes 'overcook' things, make them sound new and or novel but leave the rest of us asking - "you did a research project to find that out?!"

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  2. I read a lot of studies, though I think I am more critical and suspicious than my colleagues. I think statistics are useful, but over-read.

    I am reminded of what Dennis Prager wrote along the lines of if a study shows something that seems to be untrue be very suspicious. We can learn things that are counter-intuitive, but people with an agenda can conduct studies to give the outcome they desire.

    That said, this study is a little weak in that it is observational, it only addresses those with a previous "diagnosis", it looks at hospitalisation but not accidents, and doesn't look at whether the person is the perpetrator of the accident or the victim.

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  3. It's amazing to see some of the things that get studied these days. I'm waiting for the ultimate gender study on biological differences: studies show that in all 100 cases examined, men and women really do have different bodily structures.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Mike T, on gender differences, I think if hormones can have effects on anatomical structures related genitalia and secondary sexual characteristics then why can it not theoretically influence brain structure and function?

    ReplyDelete

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