Predicting road test performance in adults with cognitive or visual impairment referred to a veterans affairs medical center driving clinic

Patricia M. Niewoehner, Rochelle R. Henderson, Jami Dalchow, Tracy L. Beardsley, Robert A. Stern, David B. Carr

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objectives To develop a screening battery for office-based clinicians that would assist with the prediction of impaired driving performance and deciding who should proceed to road testing in a sample of adults with cognitive or visual deficits. Design Prospective observational study. Setting Driving evaluation clinic at a Veterans Affairs Medical Center (VAMC) in St. Louis, Missouri. Participants Seventy-seven individuals aged 23 to 91 with diagnoses of cognitive or visual impairment or both referred to an occupational therapy based driving clinic by VAMC providers because of concerns regarding driving safety. Measurements Predictor variables included tests of visual and cognitive functioning and activities of daily living. The major outcome was pass or fail on a standardized performance-based on-road driving test. Results Thirty percent of the referrals failed the road test. The best predictors of driving performance were the Trail-Making Test Part A and the Mazes Test from the Neuropsychological Assessment Battery. Conclusion Measures of visual search, psychomotor speed, and executive functioning accurately predicted road test performance in a significant number of participants. These brief tests may assist clinicians in deciding who should proceed with a road test in a driver rehabilitation clinic or perhaps to whom it should be recommended to cease driving.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2070-2074
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of the American Geriatrics Society
Volume60
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2012

Keywords

  • automobile driving
  • driving safety
  • psychometric testing
  • road testing

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