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Adult injury linked to intelligence

india Updated: Jan 06, 2007 15:16 IST

Smarter children may end up being safer adults then children with lower intelligence, researchers found after comparing childhood intelligence with adult injury rates.

Debbie Lawlor of the University of Bristol in England and colleagues studied 11,282 people in Scotland who were part of a large childhood development study in the 1950s and 1960s, reported Newswise wire.

The researchers found that early intelligence scores and the risk of later injury were linked even after accounting for other factors such as the child's socio-economic background and his or her physical growth.

Children from the study who scored lower on intelligence tests at ages seven, nine and 11 were more likely than their peers to be hospitalised for an accidental injury as adults, said the study published in the February issue of the American Journal of Public Health.

"To our knowledge, this is the first study to examine the relationship between childhood intelligence and risk of nonfatal injury in adulthood," Lawlor said.

The researchers say there are several reasons why childhood intelligence and adult injury might be linked.

First of all, children with lower intelligence are also more likely to suffer injuries while young. If these injuries involve the head, they may make the children more prone to accidents as adults.

The more educated a person, the weaker the link between childhood intelligence and adult injury, the researchers found.

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