January 17, 1996

Driving and Alzheimer Disease-Reply

Author Affiliations

University of California, Los Angeles

JAMA. 1996;275(3):182-183. doi:10.1001/jama.1996.03530270022014

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In Reply.  —Dr Mattes' letter raises two important points. The first concerns the type of motor vehicle crash and moving violation found in our experimental groups. This is of significant interest to both traffic safety and clinical investigators. Unfortunately, our sample sizes did not permit meaningful statistical analysis of this question based on DMV data. Ordinarily, much larger groups are used for this type of analysis. Because only major crashes are recorded by the DMV, we enriched the adverse driving event data by administering a detailed, structured interview to caregivers living with the demented subjects. The interview probed the caregiver about unrecorded collisions and about "close calls" such as running a red light or driving the wrong way down a one-way street. While we reported the principal findings from the combined DMV interview data in our recent article, we are currently reexamining the interview data to address additional qualitative issues