We have been concentrating on human impairment caused by fatigue because it is so common in the workplace particularly in shift work. But changes in general health can also cause impairment. This article summarizes results of a clinical trial involving 18,000 subjects. The ongoing study by Evan L.Thacker at Brigham Young University’s Department of Health Science in Provo, Utah finds that cardiovascular health seems to influence cognitive performance. The speculation is that subclinical strokes, “silent strokes”, may be a reduce brain performance.
Workplace accidents can just as well be caused by an individual suffering from an undetected stroke as by any other more obvious cause like fatigue, flu or illness. Our system of baselining performance and then tracking changes from baseline may alert an individual to the need for medical examination before an accident occurs.