Retraining moderately impaired stroke survivors in driving-related visual attention skills

Abiodun E. Akinwuntan, Hannes Devos, Geert Verheyden, Guido Baten, Carlotte Kiekens, Hilde Feys, Willy De Weerdt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Background: Visual inattention is a major cause of road accidents and is a problem commonly experienced after stroke. Purpose: This study investigated the effects of 2 training programs on performance in the Useful Field of View (UFOV), a validated test of driving-related visual attention skills. Method: Data from 69 first-ever, moderately impaired stroke survivors who participated in a randomized controlled trial (RCT) to determine the effects of simulator training on driving after stroke were analyzed. In addition to regular interventions at a rehabilitation center, participants received 15 hours of either simulator-based driving-related training or non-computer-based cognitive training over 5 weeks. Results: Total percentage reduction in UFOV and performance in divided and selective attention and speed of processing subtests were documented at 6 to 9 weeks (pretraining), 11 to 15 weeks (posttraining), and 6 months post stroke (follow-up). Generalized estimating equation (GEE) model revealed neither group effects nor significant interaction effects of group with time in the UFOV total score and the 3 subtests. However, there were significant within-group improvements from pre- through posttraining to follow-up for all the UFOV parameters. Post-hoc GEE analysis revealed that most improvement in both groups occurred from pre- to posttraining. Conclusion: Both training programs significantly improved visual attention skills of moderately impaired stroke survivors after 15 hours of training and retention of benefit lasted up to 6 months after stroke. Neither of the training programs was better than the other.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)328-336
Number of pages9
JournalTopics in Stroke Rehabilitation
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 2010


  • divided attention
  • driving simulator
  • rehabilitation
  • selective attention
  • speed of processing
  • stroke

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rehabilitation
  • Community and Home Care
  • Clinical Neurology


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