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J R Soc Med. 1993 October; 86(10): 566–568.
PMCID: PMC1294133

Epilepsy and driving: attitudes and practices among patients attending a seizure clinic.


Although the loss of freedom to drive is a serious consequence of the diagnosis of epilepsy, it is unclear how well current regulations are understood and adhered to by patients. Using questionnaires completed anonymously, we assessed attitudes and practices among 104 patients with epilepsy. Seventeen (16%) patients were driving, three illegally. In total, eight (8%) patients had at some stage driven illegally, even though seven admitted to having been warned not to do so. Even among the 14 patients currently driving and eligible to do so, only eight (57%) had informed the licensing authority and six (43%) their insurers. Only 34 (33%) patients showed satisfactory knowledge of current regulations, including seven (50%) of those currently driving and 21 (50%) of 42 patients who expressed a wish to drive in the future. Of these 34, only 14 (41%) expressed complete agreement with the regulations. Thus, a significant proportion of patients with epilepsy has driven illegally or has failed to inform the licensing authority or insurers. Understanding of regulations is poor. Less stringent restrictions have been shown to be safe in other countries and might improve compliance.

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Selected References

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