THE EFFECT OF CONCUSSION ON REACTION TIME AND DUAL TASKING ABILITY IN A SIMULATED DRIVING ENVIRONMENT: SOME PRELIMINARY RESULTS

Dennis Dumphy, Carlos Zerpa, Thomas Hoshizaki, Bruce Weave, Dave Mckee, Michel Bedard, Paolo Sanzo

Abstract


The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of concussion on drivers' reaction time and dual tasking ability in a simulated driving environment. Testing was performed with a STlSlM Model 400 driving simulator. Participants (27 healthy and 7 two weeks to six months post-concussion) were exposed to multiple reaction time scenarios including pedestrian, vehicle, and cyclist incursions. Dual tasking ability was measured using STlSlM dual task scenarios. There were longer reaction times in concussed participants (t(7.578)=2.342, p=.049) and a lower number of mean dual task passes in concussed participants (t(8.914)=2.558, p=.031), both of which were statistically significant. Understanding the effect concussion has on driving ability is the first step to creating a guideline for clinicians to refer to when assessing concussed patients and determining if they are fit to drive.

Keywords


concussion; reaction time; dual tasking; driving

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ISSN 1999-4168