The purpose of this study was to evaluate patients’ braking performance using a modern driving simulator after undergoing a right hip arthroscopy.
A prospective study was conducted, and a total of 14 patients scheduled to undergo a right hip arthroscopy were enrolled. A modern driving simulator was used to measure initial reaction time (IRT), throttle release time (TRT), foot movement time (FMT), and brake travel time (BTT). The braking reaction time (BRT) was calculated as the sum of IRT+TRT+FMT and the total braking time (TBT) was calculated as the sum of BRT+BTT. Patients drove in the simulator pre-operatively to establish a baseline, and then drove again at 2 weeks, 4 weeks, 6 weeks, and 8 weeks postoperatively. A control group of 17 individuals was also enrolled to account for a potential learning phenomenon.
The experimental group showed no significant changes in BTT (P = .11, = .04) nor TBT (P = .20, = .03) over the duration of 8 weeks. Although the experimental group did exhibit significant improvements in IRT (P = .002), TRT (P < .0001), FMT (P < .0001), and BRT (P = .0002) between preoperative and 2 weeks postoperative driving sessions, there were no significant changes thereafter. The mean preoperative TBT and 2 weeks postoperative TBT for the experimental group were 3.07 seconds (SD = .50) and 2.97 seconds (SD = .57) respectively. No learning phenomenon was observed in the control group.
This study’s findings suggest that patients may return to driving 2 weeks postoperatively from a right sided hip arthroscopy procedure.