Disability among adults injured in motor-vehicle crashes in the United States

J Safety Res. 2004;35(4):447-52. doi: 10.1016/j.jsr.2004.06.001.


Introduction: Little population-based information exists about the long-term effects of motor-vehicle crash-related injuries.

Method: We analyzed data from the 1995 National Health Interview Survey Disability (NHIS-D) Supplement to estimate the prevalence of crash-related disability among noninstitutionalized U.S. adults aged 18 years and older.

Results: More than 1.2 million adults were living in their homes with the disabling effects of motor-vehicle crash-related injuries in 1995. The prevalence of crash-related disability was highest for persons in their mid-life years, ages 35-64. Half of the respondents had sustained the injuries more than 5 years before the interview. Forty-one percent of working-aged individuals reported being unable to work because of their disability.

Conclusions: Because crash-related disability is most prevalent during the mid-life years, quality of life and productivity may be affected for decades. These findings highlight the personal and societal burden associated with motor-vehicle crash-related disability in the United States.

MeSH terms

  • Accidents, Traffic / statistics & numerical data*
  • Activities of Daily Living
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Distribution
  • Aged
  • Chronic Disease
  • Disabled Persons / statistics & numerical data*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Musculoskeletal Diseases / epidemiology
  • United States / epidemiology
  • Work Capacity Evaluation
  • Wounds and Injuries / epidemiology*