Older drivers not aware of medication impairment

October 9, 2009

Only about one in four drivers age 55 or older are aware that the medication or medications they take may affect their performance behind the wheel, according to an August survey by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety.

Only about one in four drivers age 55 or older are aware that the medication or medications they take may affect their performance behind the wheel, according to an August survey by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety.

Although 78 percent of respondents 55 and older use one or more medications, only 28 percent indicated some awareness of the potential impact on driving performance associated with those medications.

Only 18 percent reported that they received a warning about potentially driver-impairing medications (e.g., ACE inhibitors, sedatives, and beta blockers) from a healthcare professional. Of those surveyed, 69 percent currently use one or more potentially impairing medications and 10 percent use five or more potentially impairing medications.