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Cognitive Performance, Driving Behavior, and Attitudes over Time in Older Adults

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  29 March 2016

Mark J. Rapoport*
Department of Psychiatry, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, University of Toronto
Paweena Sukhawathanakul
Centre on Aging, University of Victoria
Gary Naglie
Research Department, Toronto Rehabilitation Institute, University Health Network Department of Medicine and Rotman Research Institute, University of Toronto Baycrest Geriatric Health Care Centre; and Department of Medicine and Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation, University of Toronto
Holly Tuokko
Centre on Aging, University of Victoria
Anita Myers
School of Public Health & Health Systems, University of Waterloo
Alexander Crizzle
School of Public Health & Health Systems, University of Waterloo
Nicol Korner-Bitensky
Faculty of Medicine, School of Physical and Occupational Therapy, McGill University Centre de recherche interdisciplinaire en réadaptation du Montréal métropolitain (CRIR)
Brenda Vrkljan
School of Rehabilitation Science, McMaster University
Michel Bédard
Centre for Research on Safe Driving, Lakehead University
Michelle M. Porter
Faculty of Kinesiology and Recreation Management, University of Manitoba
Barbara Mazer
Faculty of Medicine, School of Physical and Occupational Therapy, McGill University Centre de recherche interdisciplinaire en réadaptation du Montréal métropolitain (CRIR)
Isabelle Gélinas
Faculty of Medicine, School of Physical and Occupational Therapy, McGill University Centre de recherche interdisciplinaire en réadaptation du Montréal métropolitain (CRIR)
Malcolm Man-Son-Hing
Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, University of Ottawa
Shawn Marshall
Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, University of Ottawa
La correspondance et les demandes de tirés-à-part doivent être adressées à: / Correspondence and requests for offprints should be sent to: Mark J. Rapoport, MD, FRCPC Department of Psychiatry Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre University of Toronto FG37-2075 Bayview Ave. Toronto, ON M4C 5N6 (


We hypothesized that changes over time in cognitive performance are associated with changes in driver perceptions, attitudes, and self-regulatory behaviors among older adults. Healthy older adults (n = 928) underwent cognitive assessments at baseline with two subsequent annual follow-ups, and completed scales regarding their perceptions, attitudes, and driving behaviours. Multivariate analysis showed small but statistically significant relationships between the cognitive tests and self-report measures, with the largest magnitudes between scores on the Trails B cognitive task (seconds), perceptions of driving abilities (β = –0.32), and situational driving avoidance (β = 0.55) (p < 0.05). Cognitive slowing and executive dysfunction appear to be associated with modestly lower perceived driving abilities and more avoidance of driving situations over time in this exploratory analysis.


Nous avons théorisé que les changements au fil du temps dans les performances cognitives sont associés à des changements dans les perceptions, les attitudes et les comportements d’auto-régulation des personnes âgées qui conduisent. Les adultes âgés en bonne santé (n = 928) ont subi les évaluations cognitives au début avec deux suivis annuels subséquents, et ils ont rempli des formulaires avec des échelles qui mesurent leurs perceptions, les attitudes et les comportements de conduite. L’analyse multivariée montre des petites relations, mais statistiquement significatives, entre les tests cognitifs et les mesures qui ont été auto-déclarée, les plus grandes amplitudes entre les scores étant sur les sentiers B tâche cognitive (secondes), la perception de la capacité de conduire (β = 0,32), et l’évasion des situations de conduite (β = 0,55) (p <0,05). Selon cette analyse exploratoire, le ralentissement cognitif et le dysfonctionnement exécutif semblent être associés aux capacités à conduire perçues d'être modestement inférieurs et à l’évitement accru des situations de conduite au fil du temps.

Copyright © Canadian Association on Gerontology 2016 

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