The objective was to evaluate whether driving simulator and road test evaluations can predict long-term driving performance. A prospective study was conducted on 11 patients with moderate to severe traumatic brain injury. Sixteen healthy subjects were also tested to provide normative values on the simulator at baseline. At their initial evaluation (time-1), subjects' driving skills were measured during a 30-minute simulator trial using an automated 12-measure Simulator Performance Index (SPI), while a trained observer also rated their performance using a Driving Performance Inventory (DPI). In addition, patients were evaluated on the road by a certified driving evaluator. Ten months later (time-2), family members observed patients driving for at least 3 hours over 4 weeks and rated their driving performance using the DPI. At time-1, patients were significantly impaired on automated SPI measures of driving skill, including: speed and steering control, accidents, and vigilance to a divided-attention task. These simulator indices significantly predicted the following aspects of observed driving performance at time-2: handling of automobile controls, regulation of vehicle speed and direction, higher-order judgment and self-control, as well as a trend-level association with car accidents. Automated measures of simulator skill (SPI) were more sensitive and accurate than observational measures of simulator skill (DPI) in predicting actual driving performance. Surprisingly, the road test results at time-1 showed no significant relation to driving performance at time-2. It was concluded that simulator-based assessment of patients with brain injuries can provide ecologically valid measures that, in some cases, may be more sensitive than a traditional road test as predictors of long-term driving performance in the community.

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  • Corporate Authors:

    Taylor & Francis

    325 Chestnut Street, Suite 800
    Philadelphia, PA  United States  19106
  • Authors:
    • Lew, H L
    • Poole, J H
    • Ha Lee, E
    • Jaffe, D L
    • Huang, H-C
    • Brodd, E
  • Publication Date: 2005-3


  • English

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  • Accession Number: 00989203
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Apr 13 2005 12:00AM