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dmcfarlane
03-01-2006, 09:47 AM
Good news for left-handers!

Is anyone there looking at the design of tools and machinery controls? It is starting to look to me that it is a topic that needs further research. For both of my recent questions I have been deluged with interesting answers and theories. I have looked and some and I am still not sure what a meta-analysis of the research would conclude other than that further research the design of tools and machinery controls for left handers appears to be needed.If anyone does have enough time to read all of the references please let us all know what you conclude! Here are the (re the order; the shorter ones are roughly at the start and vice versa):

1. Jen Baird (University of Massachusetts, Motor Control Lab)

(a) Provided this reference:

Salive, ME et al, 1993. Left-handedness and mortality. American Journal of Public Health. 83:265-267.)

(b) More men are left-handed than women, and men tend to die younger. This also accounts for fewer lefties in old age.

2. Robert Schleip (Ulm University, Germany):

Have a look at the brilliant paper by Mechsner F et al: Perceptual basis of bimanual coordination. Nature 2001 Nov 1;414(6859):69-73. Or several other papers on this topic by Mechsner. www.fasciaresearch.com

3. Siegfried Jaecques

I remember reading about a theory (maybe from a discussion on biomch-l) that the statistics on survival of left-handers vs right-handers were made with demographic data that spanned World War I and WWII. See Aggleton (1994).
Indeed the left-handers had a higher probability of death in combat because weapon systems in those days were designed for right-handers. For example, the action of a standard rifle is very hard to operate with the left hand since the bolt handle is on the right. If you saw the movie "Saving private Ryan", you may remember that the sniper in the squad of Captain Miller is left-handed and there are a few scenes where you can see that his left sleeve gets stuck on the scope will cycling his gun. In the end, he gets shot by a German tank that he spotted too late because he was distracted.

With more recent demographic data, the survival of left-handers is not significantly lower than that of right-handers. You can check-out the reference list below.

Record 1 of 10
Author(s): AGGLETON, JP; BLAND, JM; KENTRIDGE, RW; NEAVE, NJ
Title: HANDEDNESS AND LONGEVITY - ARCHIVAL STUDY OF CRICKETERS
BRITISH MEDICAL JOURNAL, 309 (6970): 1681-1684 DEC 24 1994

Record 2 of 10
Author(s): COREN, S
Title: THE DIMINISHED NUMBER OF OLDER LEFTHANDERS - DIFFERENTIAL MORTALITY OR SOCIAL-HISTORICAL TREND
Publisher: GORDON BREACH SCI PUBL LTD

Record 3 of 10
Author(s): CERHAN, JR; FOLSOM, AR; POTTER, JD; PRINEAS, RJ
Title: HANDEDNESS AND MORTALITY RISK IN OLDER WOMEN
Source: AMERICAN JOURNAL OF EPIDEMIOLOGY, 140 (4): 368-374 AUG 15 1994

Record 4 of 10
Author(s): COREN, S
Title: AGE TRENDS IN HANDEDNESS - EVIDENCE FOR HISTORICAL CHANGES IN SOCIAL PRESSURE ON THE WRITING HAND
Source: JOURNAL OF SOCIAL BEHAVIOR AND PERSONALITY, 9 (2): 369-376 JUN 1994

Record 5 of 10
Author(s): PERSSON, PG; ALLEBECK, P
Title: DO LEFT-HANDERS HAVE INCREASED MORTALITY
Source: EPIDEMIOLOGY, 5 (3): 337-340 MAY 1994

Record 6 of 10
Author(s): HARRIS, LJ
Title: LEFT-HANDEDNESS AND LIFE-SPAN - REPLY
Source: PSYCHOLOGICAL BULLETIN, 114 (2): 242-247 SEP 1993

Record 7 of 10
Author(s): HOFFSTEIN, V; CHAN, CK; SLUTSKY, AS
Title: HANDEDNESS AND SLEEP-APNEA
Source: CHEST, 103 (6): 1860-1862 JUN 1993

Record 8 of 10
Author(s): SALIVE, ME; GURALNIK, JM; GLYNN, RJ
Title: LEFT-HANDEDNESS AND MORTALITY
Source: AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PUBLIC HEALTH, 83 (2): 265-267 FEB 1993

Record 9 of 10
Author(s): MARCHANTHAYCOX, SE; MCMANUS, IC; WILSON, GD
Title: LEFT-HANDEDNESS, HOMOSEXUALITY, HIV-INFECTION AND AIDS
Source: CORTEX, 27 (1): 49-56 MAR 1991

Record 10 of 10
Author(s): DELLATOLAS, G; TUBERT, P; CASTRESANA, A; MESBAH, M; GIALLONARDO, T; LAZARATOU, H; LELLOUCH, J
Title: AGE AND COHORT EFFECTS IN ADULT HANDEDNESS
Source: NEUROPSYCHOLOGIA, 29 (3): 225-261 1991



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