Saturday, October 12, 2013

Research on Vision Therapy

Research on Vision Therapy
I am tired of various patients, MDs and others telling me their is no research supporting vision therapy. COVD has published this on their website. You can also go to PubMed and Google Scholar to find more research on the topic. Most are just to lazy too look, too lazy to read and too lazy to understand. Their biases get in the way of the research. This is sad. 

I figure if this is available here AND on the CO'VD website perhaps even the laziest of of folks can find this information. DM

COVD has compiled summaries of research and clinical studies on optometric vision therapy.  These summaries provide an overview of the literature on the use of vision therapy for several visual conditions.

Summary 1
Completed in July, 2009, this paper presents over 350 abstracts from 77 journals.

Summary 2
Completed in October, 2010, this paper presents 35 additional abstracts.

Summary 3
Completed in October, 2011, this paper presents 65 additional abstracts.

A Summary of Research and Clinical Studies on Vision and Learning
A listing of some of the research reports and clinical studies on the relationship of vision to reading and learning ability and the effectiveness of vision therapy in the treatment of learning-related vision problems.

Clinical Practice Guidelines (American Optometric Association)
Additional clinical and research support for the efficacy of vision therapy.

Research Update on Visually-Based Reading Disability
This research document provides a synopsis of the scientific results on the study of visually-based reading disabilities.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Monday, October 7, 2013

Identifying barriers to follow-up eye care for children after failed vision screening in a primary care setting.

Identifying barriers to follow-up eye care for children after failed vision screening in a primary care setting.

.....Parental unawareness of a failed visual acuity screening is an important barrier to obtaining follow-up. Strategies to improve follow-up rates after a failed visual acuity screening may include communicating the results clearly and consistently, providing education about the importance of timely follow-up, and offering logistic support for accessing eye appointments to families......

Comments: The problem is not the barriers discussed above. The solution is not the pro-offered ones above. The ONLY solution is a full, comprehensive eye and vision examination for EVERY child. No screenings. Screenings have been shown not to do what they are supposed to do (search vision screening on this blog). Also see " Why Vision Screenings Are No Substitute for a Complete Eye Exam"  DM

Special Message to Parents to “Never Give Up”

Grandmother Finally Learns How to Read & Joins the College of Optometrists in Vision Development with a Special Message to Parents to “Never Give Up”

The College of Optometrists in Vision Development is pleased to welcome Beanie Leffler in helping us celebrate August as International Children’s Vision & Learning Month.
As August is wrapping up, International Children’s Vision and Learning Month is quickly coming to a close.  “It is our hope the message that vision problems can interfere with one’s ability to read and learn will continue throughout the school year,” states Dr. David Damari, OD, FCOVD, President of the College of Optometrists in Vision Development.
“We know it can be tough for parents to know what to do when their children are struggling with reading,” Damari continues, “The goal for Children’s Vision & Learning Month is to help parents to understand that the first thing they need to check is whether or not their child has a vision problem.” 
However, one of the biggest mistakes parents can make is to assume that their child’s vision is fine because thevision screening was passed at the pediatrician’s office or the school nurse’s office. 
Beanie Leffler, now 60 years old, knows firsthand how big a mistake that is. She had passed all the vision screenings, and her parents never suspected she had a vision problem, even though she had tremendous difficulty with reading.  Her first eye exam was when she was in the seventh grade, and that’s when she started wearing glasses.  But even with the eye exam, a very serious eye coordination problem was missed.
“I was held back in first grade and I took every remedial class, every summer school, everything that my parents could possibly send me to,” said Leffler. “I struggled with reading all the way through high school.  I wanted to be a part of the school newspaper, but because of my reading issues, all I could do for the paper was staple it.”
The saddest day of her life was when she was trying to read to her 5-year old son, Leffler said. “He looked up at me and said ‘Mom, my teacher reads better than you,’ and then he walked away from me. That was my wake-up call.” 
When she was 52 she was diagnosed with severe Dyslexia and told there was nothing that could be done to help her. Yet, she did not give up in her battle to learn how to read. When she was 55 she was fortunate to see a tutor who recognized that she might have a vision problem blocking her from being able to read.  She referred her to a developmental optometrist who found the eye coordination disorder that was at the root of Beanie’s struggles.
After a program of optometric vision therapy, Beanie is now not only able to read, but she has written a book with the goal of sharing her story and the important message to “never give up.”  “If I help just one child, the book will be worth it,” shared Beanie.  Beanie has already helped more than one child to discover that they too had underlying vision problems. 
“One child was actually being teased at school, the kids were saying ‘Camryn is beautiful, but she is dumb.’  Fortunately her mother heard about my book on Facebook and decided to take her child to a developmental optometrist also.” Beanie continues, “Just last week she called me to let me know that Camryn also had a correctable eye coordination problem.”
So it is with great pride that Beanie joins the College of Optometrists in Vision Development to help spread the message that vision problems can indeed block a child’s ability to read. Beanie’s message to parents?  “Please learn more about how vision problems can hold children back from achieving to their potential.  Learn the signs and symptoms that will tell you if your child could have a vision problem.  And most of all never give up.  Even if the best experts tell you it isn’t due to vision, don’t stop searching for answers.”
“We applaud Beanie’s persistence and admire the fact that she never gave up on her goal to learn how to read,” states Damari; “We hope that Beanie’s story inspires parents to take action now and visit our website,  And also, please share this story with everyone you know who struggles with reading.  It could make all the difference!” 

CONTACT: Pamela R. Happ, CAE
COVD Executive Director
888.268.3770 tel
Email: [email protected] 
About COVD
The College of Optometrists in Vision Development (COVD) is an international, non-profit optometric membership organization that provides education, evaluation, and board certification programs in behavioral and developmental vision care, vision therapy, and visual rehabilitation. The organization is comprised of doctors of optometry, vision therapists and other vision specialists. For more information on learning-related vision problems, vision therapy and COVD, please visit or call 888.268.3770.
A series of public service announcements (PSAs) are available at to help raise awareness that vision problems can not only interfere with learning, but sports performance, and other activities of daily living. These PSAs also address vision problems that impact individuals who have autism spectrum disorders or those who have suffered a head injury.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

ADD/ADHD & Vision

ADD/ADHD & Vision
......Some children with learning difficulties exhibit specific behaviors of impulsivity, hyperactivity, and distractibility. A common term used to describe children who exhibit such behaviors is Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Undetected and untreated vision problems can elicit some of the very same signs and symptoms that are commonly attributed to ADHD. Due to these similarities, some children with vision problems are mislabeled as having ADHD.

New Research in Vision & ADD/ADHD

A recent study by researchers at the Children's Eye Center, University of San Diego, uncovered a relationship between a common vision disorder, convergence insufficiency, and ADHD. The study "showed that children with convergence insufficiency are three times as likely to be diagnosed with ADHD than children without the disorder."
Dr. Granet of the Children's Eye Center commented, "We don't know if convergence insufficiency makes ADHD worse or if convergence insufficiency is misdiagnosed as ADHD. What we do know is that more research must be done on this subject and that patients diagnosed with ADHD should also be evaluated for convergence insufficiency and treated accordingly."....
 Comments: I have started using the TOVA (Test of Variables Attention) to aid in the diagnosis and treatment of vision related attentional problems. Is it ADHD, ADD or implusivity? Are the vision problems the cause of the issues with attention? Frequently, vision therapy can help. DM