Sunday, 20 May 2012

Driving and Brain Metastasis

People who have been driving their vehicles for several years (most times decades) are really upset when we tell them that they should not be driving their cars.

In Australia the onus is on the clinicians to get affected patients to stop driving their cars. The treating clinician is meant to tell the patient to stop driving and send a letter to the Driving Authority to withhold/revoke the patient's driver's license.

The number of clinicians who even know about this is minimal!!

If a patient's cancer has spread to their brain, the chances of seizures or altered consciousness are quite high. There is no specific time or place when things can get out of control. Also these patients have had radiotherapy, surgery, are on high dose steroids, narcotics, etc... and thus the mental cognition and reaction time is dramatically altered.

The conversation is a difficult one. But a very important one. It could save the patient's life and others on the road.

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