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Incidental Visual Field Loss: Ethical Considerations In Assessing and Reporting Ability to Drive

Szewka, Aimee J. MD; Newman, Nancy MD, FAAN

CONTINUUM: Lifelong Learning in Neurology:
doi: 10.1212/01.CON.0000453303.20110.60
Ethical Perspectives

ABSTRACT: Driving safety is an issue frequently encountered in the neurology clinic, particularly as it pertains to cognitive decline, vision loss, and motor limitations. This case illustrates the ethical dilemmas associated with determining driving safety, particularly those associated with an incidentally found congenital visual field abnormality. The authors discuss the issues involved with overruling patient autonomy for the principle of beneficence and the ethics of reporting patients with unsafe vision to authorities.

Author Information

Address correspondence to Dr Aimee J. Szewka, Rush University Medical Center, 1725 W. Harrison Street, Suite 1118 Chicago, IL 60612,

Relationship Disclosure: Dr Szewka reports no disclosure. Dr Newman receives book royalties from Elsevier and Thieme, serves as a consultant for Trius Therapeutics, Inc, and has provided expert testimony for multiple law firms.

Unlabeled Use of Products/Investigational Use Disclosure: Drs Szewka and Newman report no disclosures.

© 2014 American Academy of Neurology