Vision, attention, and driving

David E. Anderson, Deepta A. Ghate, Matthew Rizzo

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

4 Scopus citations


Safe driving demands the coordination of multiple sensory and cognitive functions, such as vision and attention. Patients with neurologic or ophthalmic disease are exposed to selective pathophysiologic insults to driving-critical systems, placing them at a higher risk for unsafe driving and restricted driving privileges. Here, we evaluate how vision and attention contribute to unsafe driving across different patient populations. In ophthalmic disease, we focus on macular degeneration, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, and cataract; in neurologic disease, we focus on Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and multiple sclerosis. Unsafe driving is generally associated with impaired vision and attention in ophthalmic and neurologic patients, respectively. Furthermore, patients with ophthalmic disease experience some degree of impairment in attention. Similarly, patients with neurologic disease experience some degree of impairment in vision. While numerous studies have demonstrated a relationship between impaired vision and unsafe driving in neurologic disease, there remains a dearth of knowledge regarding the relationship between impaired attention and unsafe driving in ophthalmic disease. In summary, this chapter confirms—and offers opportunities for future research into—the contribution of vision and attention to safe driving.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationHandbook of Clinical Neurology
PublisherElsevier B.V.
Number of pages24
StatePublished - Jan 2021

Publication series

NameHandbook of Clinical Neurology
ISSN (Print)0072-9752
ISSN (Electronic)2212-4152


  • Attention
  • Cognition
  • Driving
  • Information processing
  • Neurologic disease
  • Ophthalmic disease
  • Retina
  • Vision

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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