Driving following traumatic brain injury: Prevalence, exposure, advice and evaluations

Academic Article


  • Survivors of traumatic brain injury often have long-term sensory, cognitive and motor deficits that may impair vehicle operation. However, relatively little is known about the driving status and driving characteristics of brain injury survivors. To better understand driving following traumatic brain injury, a survey of driving status, driving exposure, advice received about driving and evaluations of driving competency was administered to a convenience sample of traumatic brain injury survivors (n = 83). The majority of survey participants had experienced either moderate or severe traumatic brain injuries based on the Glasgow Coma Scale. A total of 60% of the survey participants reported that they were currently active drivers. Most individuals ( > 60%) who had returned to driving reported driving every day and more than 50 miles per week. Traumatic brain injury survivors frequently received advice about driving from family members, physicians or non-physician health care professionals, but over half (63%) had not been professionally evaluated for driving competency. The presence of high driving exposure, coupled with a lack of widespread driving fitness testing, suggests that some traumatic brain injury survivors have characteristics that may evaluate their risk for vehicle crashes. However, subsequent prospective studies that directly assess driver safety will be needed to confirm this possibility.
  • Authors

    Published In

  • Brain Injury  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Fisk GD; Schneider JJ; Novack TA
  • Start Page

  • 683
  • End Page

  • 695
  • Volume

  • 12
  • Issue

  • 8