What Predicts Changes in Useful Field of View Test Performance?

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The Useful Field of View Test (UFOV) has been used as an examination of age-related changes in visual processing and cognition and as an indicator of everyday performance outcomes, particularly driving, for over 20 years. How UFOV performance changes with age and what may impact such changes have not previously been investigated longitudinally. Predictors of change in UFOV performance over a 5-year period among control group participants (N = 690) from the Advanced Cognitive Training for Independent and Vital Elderly (ACTIVE) study were examined. Random effects models were estimated with 4-subtest-total UFOV as the outcome and with baseline age, education, gender, race, visual acuity, depressive symptoms, mental status, and self-rated health, as well as attrition, as predictors. UFOV performance generally followed a curvilinear pattern, improving and then declining over time. Only increased age was consistently related to greater declines in UFOV performance over time. UFOV and Digit Symbol Substitution subtest, a standard measure of cognitive speed, had similar trajectories of change. The implications of these results are discussed.

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