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When Is It Safe to Drive after Mild Traumatic Brain Injury/Sports-related Concussion?

Christensen, Jacob, DO1; McGrew, Christopher A., MD, FACSM1,2

Current Sports Medicine Reports: January 2019 - Volume 18 - Issue 1 - p 17–19
doi: 10.1249/JSR.0000000000000558
Head, Neck, and Spine: Section Articles
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Driving an automobile has inherent danger, and driving after mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI)/sports-related concussion (SRC) can make this task even more hazardous. There is evidence to suggest that restriction from driving for the first 24 to 48 h after mTBI/SRC is probably reasonable. However, after the first 48 h have passed, there is insufficient evidence to make a recommendation regarding return to driving. Clinicians need to weigh the evidence and make decisions on how to advise their patients on a case by case basis. Further research is required to provide a standardized recommendation.

Driving after mTBI/SRC may involve increased risk, but the evidence is lacking for clear recommendations for restrictions after the first 24 to 48 h.

1Department of Family and Community Medicine, University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center, Albuquerque, NM; and

2Department of Orthopedics and Rehabilitation, University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center, Albuquerque, NM

Address for correspondence: Christopher McGrew, MD, Department of Family and Community Medicine, Department of Orthopedics and Rehabilitation University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center, 2211 Lomas NE Albuquerque, NM 87106; E-mail: cmcgrew@salud.unm.edu.

Copyright © 2019 by the American College of Sports Medicine.