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Jason Locklin, James Danckert; Changes in visuomotor performance of concussed individuals. Journal of Vision 2009;9(8):1103. doi: 10.1167/9.8.1103.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
Recently, researchers have found evidence that after a concussion, residual visuo-motor control deficits may linger longer than working memory or psychomotor speed deficits. All of the major computer administered test batteries currently in use for concussion rehabilitation rely on examination of the latter kinds of tasks, and lack any measures of visuomotor control. The present research set out to develop a range of tasks which measure integrated visuomotor performance. Using a touch-screen computer, the first task required participants to point towards or away from (i.e., antipointing) a target. A second task required participants to intercept moving targets, and a third had participant's pointing to targets which moved in an unpredictable manner. All three required participants to use visual information to execute controlled movements, but ranged in the degree to which movement planning, early, or late guidance depended on visual information. The three tasks were delivered to 124 individuals from a healthy population to develop normative data for each of the measures. A self-report questionnaire was used to identify individuals from the normative population who had a prior history of concussion. Eighteen individuals were identified, and their performance was directly contrasted with the healthy individuals. While only a few reported moderate or severe concussions, and information about recency and number of occurrences were unavailable, performance differences were observed which provided evidence of residual deficits. In particular, while concussed individuals were not slower, or less accurate than the healthy population on the “pointing-antipointing” task, they demonstrated greater variability of performance. Future research will compare recently concussed individuals with the normative set developed here, and make direct comparisons with an existing computer administered test battery.
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