Does gender affect the driving performance of young patients with diabetes?

Dana Ridel, Avinoam Borowsky, Rotem Shalev Shamay, Eli Hershkovitz, Yisrael Parmet, Alon Haim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Recent evidence suggests that poor glycemic control among young patients with type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM) has negative cognitive and physical effects, whose extent is gender-dependent. For example, female patients with diabetes present more physical and cognitive limitations than male patients in terms of cognitive adjustment, quality of decision making, and functioning. Studies about traffic safety report that diabetic drivers are at increased risk of being involved in road crashes, especially when driving in a state of hypoglycemia under which their blood glucose level is too low. We have recently demonstrated that acute hyperglycemia (when the blood glucose level is too high) can also lead to poor driving performance among T1DM young adult patients. Against this background, the objective of the present study was to find out whether gender affects the driving performance of young drivers with diabetes. Twenty-six T1DM drivers participated in a counterbalanced crossover experiment. While being monitored by an eye tracker, they drove a driving simulator and twice navigated through the nine hazardous scenarios: once under a normal blood glucose (euglycemia) level and once high blood glucose (hyperglycemia) level. The first main result is that young female drivers are more affected by diabetes than young male drivers, regardless of momentary glycemic changes. The second main result is that poor glycemic control substantially deteriorates hazard perception and driving performance of young males with diabetes. Thus, it is argued that an uncontrolled state of a high blood glucose level may be more hazardous for young males with diabetes since it negatively impacts their driving performance.

Original languageEnglish
Article number106569
JournalAccident Analysis and Prevention
Volume167
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2022

Keywords

  • Diabetes
  • Driving performance
  • Driving simulator
  • Eye movements
  • Gender
  • Hazard perception

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human Factors and Ergonomics
  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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