Alzheimer disease biomarkers and driving in clinically normal older adults: Role of spatial navigational abilities

As older adults experience changes in their driving performance, they often modify their driving habits, including limiting the time and distance they travel. We examined whether AD biomarkers (cerebrospinal fluid [CSF]) were associated with lower self-reported navigational abilities, how often/far participants drive, and how they performed on their road test. We looked at 112 clinically normal older adults (no memory problems) who completed an on-road driving test, and self-report measures of navigational abilities and driving habits. We found that lower self-reported navigational ability was associated with reduced driving, but not with driving errors on the driving test. Findings suggest that higher levels of AD biomarkers are associated with lower perceived ability to navigate the environment, which may lead older adults with AD pathology to limit their driving.

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