Purpose: Traffic accidents are associated with the visual function of drivers, as well as many other factors. Driving simulator systems have the advantage of controlling for traffic- and automobile-related conditions, and using pinhole glasses can control the degree of concentric concentration of the visual field. We evaluated the effect of concentric constriction of the visual field on automobile driving, using driving simulator tests. Methods: Subjects meeting criteria for normal eyesight were included in the study. Pinhole glasses with variable aperture sizes were adjusted to mimic the conditions of concentric visual field constrictions of 10° and 15°, using a CLOCK CHART®. The test contained 8 scenarios (2 oncoming right-turning cars and 6 jump-out events from the side). Results: Eighty-eight subjects were included in the study; 37(mean age = 52.9±15.8 years) subjects were assigned to the 15° group, and 51 (mean = 48.6±15.5 years) were assigned to the 10° group. For all 8 scenarios, the number of accidents was significantly higher among pinhole wearing subjects. The average number of all types of accidents per person was significantly higher in the pinhole 10° group (4.59±1.81) than the pinhole 15° group (3.68±1.49) (P = 0.032). The number of accidents associated with jump-out scenarios, in which a vehicle approaches from the side on a straight road with a good view, was significantly higher in the pinhole 10° group than in the pinhole 15° group. Conclusions: Concentric constriction of the visual field was associated with increased number of traffic accidents. The simulation findings indicated that a visual field of 10° to 15° may be important for avoiding collisions in places where there is a straight road with a good view.
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