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Arch Ophthalmol. 2005 Jan;123(1):14-24.

A randomized clinical trial of treatments for convergence insufficiency in children.

Author information

  • 1Eye Institute, Pennsylvania College of Optometry, Philadelphia 19141, USA. mscheiman@pco.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To compare vision therapy/orthoptics, pencil push-ups, and placebo vision therapy/orthoptics as treatments for symptomatic convergence insufficiency in children 9 to 18 years of age.

METHODS:

In a randomized, multicenter clinical trial, 47 children 9 to 18 years of age with symptomatic convergence insufficiency were randomly assigned to receive 12 weeks of office-based vision therapy/orthoptics, office-based placebo vision therapy/orthoptics, or home-based pencil push-ups therapy.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:

The primary outcome measure was the symptom score on the Convergence Insufficiency Symptom Survey. Secondary outcome measures were the near point of convergence and positive fusional vergence at near.

RESULTS:

Symptoms, which were similar in all groups at baseline, were significantly reduced in the vision therapy/orthoptics group (mean symptom score decreased from 32.1 to 9.5) but not in the pencil push-ups (mean symptom score decreased from 29.3 to 25.9) or placebo vision therapy/orthoptics groups (mean symptom score decreased from 30.7 to 24.2). Only patients in the vision therapy/orthoptics group demonstrated both statistically and clinically significant changes in the clinical measures of near point of convergence (from 13.7 cm to 4.5 cm; P < .001) and positive fusional vergence at near (from 12.5 prism diopters to 31.8 prism diopters; P < .001).

CONCLUSIONS:

In this pilot study, vision therapy/orthoptics was more effective than pencil push-ups or placebo vision therapy/orthoptics in reducing symptoms and improving signs of convergence insufficiency in children 9 to 18 years of age. Neither pencil push-ups nor placebo vision therapy/orthoptics was effective in improving either symptoms or signs associated with convergence insufficiency.

Comment in

PMID:
15642806
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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