Friday, May 17, 2013

Does Optometric Vision Therapy Work?

Lyons Family Eye Care Vision Therapy Success Story
Our patient was not only successful at vision therapy but he also saw many improvements in academic perforamance and other areas as well. Pictured: LFEC optometrist Dr. Dominick Maino, LFEC successful patient MT and his mother, and LFEC therapist Lauren. We are very proud of MT and his family for doing so very well!
I am frequently asked, "Does Optometric Vision Therapy Work?" by the families I work with every day. If they mean, does vision therapy improve vision function such as eye movements, focusing, eye teaming and 3D vision ... the answer is a resounding YES! If they mean.... does vision therapy work to improve vision information processing....the answer is YES! If they mean that amblyopia (lazy eye) and strabismus can be improved...the answer is YES!

 If by work they mean will reading and academic performance improve....the research is not quite as clear on this....and vision therapy does not teach a child how to read, or spell or do math....however, we know that vision affects learning and that the current research available would also suggest the answer should be yes.

One of the Facebook pages I belong to had a participant that asked the question above....and here are the responses.....

......My son went to the eye doctor today. He recommends 6 sessions of Vision Therapy. Have any of your children had improvement using VT?


......We had tremendous success but I'm not sure what 6 sessions would do. I think my son went for 6 or 8 months.

..... I would have to say yes, my son went through two set of therapy one for convergence and the other for ocular motor dyspraxia. My son made honor role this twice

.......The Doctor said, they will do the evaluation, the 6 sessions, then re-evaluate. Hoping they work!

........ VT changed my son's life. Best of luck for your son!

........ mine has already had 24 sessions..her attitude has improved tremendously..she's started to want to read certain books now for the first time in 2 years..she got straight a's last quarter and should this quarter too..you can tell she is understanding a a lot more..she supposedly has about 40 more sessions to go possibly though so we have only really started. mine was also getting treatment for babesiosis after 1 year of antibiotics for lyme and earobics at the same time. I think the vt and the anti malaria drugs are both helping..lyme dr said ci will disappear when her illness goes away..i don't think it will disappear but I think meds are helping her vt work faster


........i think i'm seeing that with my daughter but trying not to get too hopeful that she'll get back to what I thought she was capable of
.......My son did his therapy in grades 2 and 3. He was reading at grade 1.1 when he started (February of grade 2). By the end of grade 3 he was reading at grade 3.7 so almost at appropriate grade level!! Other day to day changes we noticed were his ability to catch a ball, put Lego together, play cards. None of which he could do prior to a he was seeing double most of the time.

......... My daughter did VT during 5th grade. She was reading on a 1.4 grade level. Once she was done she was reading on a 9.8 level! She has so much more confidence! Grades are A's and B's. Much better than before.

........ My college age daughter did VT and it made an enormous difference for her. She just got her BA!

.........Congrats to all of them! My son is behind in reading and math. School actually was doing special education testing for learning disabilities-when he was diagnosed with CI. I'm hoping with VT he has an improvement-just to prove to school that he hasn't needed the remedial classes and extra help they always insisted he needed!!

......... my daughter is in 2nd grade and was recently diagnosed. Finally a reason behind her difficulty with reading! We began an online therapy program about a month ago. Will have her reevaluated in 2 months. So nice to read all of the success stories.Good Stuff being done!

.................my childs testing actually showed the problems but they ignored everything because she had 2 ear infections,when tested and they decided she was just average..now she's proving how wrong they were..a school psych told me I'd never figure out why my child was answering questions in a bizarre fashion...hope those words are really tasty school psych (if you follow my posts..prob not smart enough to do so)..can you tell i hold on to intense anger to a system who wouldn't lift a finger to help my child


....... I feel the same way! My son was diagnosed ODD, ADD, and most recent with Anxiety and Depression. After all the medications to control all these symptoms for years and I find out they might not have been needed! One teacher told my husband and I, our so...See More
........ I tried in every way possible to educate our system..they are "politely" ignoring me..if people can prove this problem causes educational issues turn they'd have to pay for treatment and they don't want that..also it,would,then require less teachers and,that's a big no no to ever push..what schools need are tests for it and qualified vision therapists for it..not to mention intelligent psychs who know,about it plus,the cognitive impact of lyme....

Comments: We should not confuse testimonials with research. When these testimonials are heard over and over again....decade after decade....you know, however, that the research needs to catch up to the clinical reality. Optometry and especial, my ophthalmology colleagues, need to keep up with the current research so that they can either provide vision therapy in their office or refer these patients to those who do. If you are looking for a doctor to help your child with learning related vision problems, please log on to the College of Optometrists in Vision Development and the Optometric Extension Program Foundation websites .... or if you live in the Chicago area the Illinois Eye Instititue or Lyons Family Eye Care (I provide care at both of these fine health care facilities.... so I'm just a bit biased!) If you have questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me. DM

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