Allergic rhinitis is a risk factor for traffic safety

In this study, the authors sought to determine the effect of untreated allergic rhinitis (AR) on driving performance in comparison with treated AR. AR afflicts up to to 30% of the adult population and has been shown to impair cognitive and psychomotor function. The study's sample included 19 patients with AR who completed an on-the-road driving test outside of the pollen season in order to control for AR symptoms. The subjects underwent a nasal provocation test with either pollen or inactive control prior to the driving test and were pretreated with either cetirizine, fluticasone furoate or placebo. The study showed driving performance to be significantly impaired among those symptomatic patients who were not treated in comparison to those receiving placebo. Performance was further impaired when drivers had to engage in a secondary memory task. The level of impairment was comparable to that seen at a blood alcohol level of 0.05%, and the authors concluded that AR does indeed impair driving ability and create risk for drivers. Their findings also indicate that drug treatment of AR can reduce some driver impairment, thus making the case for treatment of this condition.

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  • Accession Number: 01532528
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jun 16 2014 1:28PM