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Restor Neurol Neurosci. 2007;25(5-6):563-72.

Recovery of visual field defects: a large clinical observational study using vision restoration therapy.

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Institute of Medical Psychology, Medical Faculty, Otto-von-Guericke University of Magdeburg, Magdeburg, Germany.



In small experimental trials, vision restoration therapy (VRT), a home-based rehabilitation method, has shown to enlarge the visual field and improve reaction times in patients with lesion involving the CNS. We now evaluated the outcome of VRT in a large sample of clinical patients and studied factors contributing to subjective and objective measures of visual field alterations.


Clinical observational analysis of visual fields of 302 patients before and after being treated with computer-based vision restoration therapy for a period of 6 months at eight clinical centers in central Europe. The visual field defects were due to ischemia, hemorrhage, head trauma, tumor removal or anterior ischemic optic neuropathy. Primary outcome measure was a visual field assessment with super-threshold perimetry. Additionally, conventional near-threshold perimetry, eye movements and subjective reports of daily life activities were assessed in a subset of the patients.


VRT improved patients' ability to detect super-threshold stimuli in the previously deficient area of the visual field by 17.2% and these detection gains were not significantly correlated with eye movements. Notable improvements were seen in 70.9% of the patients. Efficacy was independent of lesion age and etiology, but patients with larger areas of residual vision at baseline and patients>65 years old benefited most. Conventional perimetry validated visual field enlargements and patient testimonials confirmed the improvement in every day visual functions.


VRT improves visual functions in a large clinical sample of patients with visual field defects involving the CNS, confirming former experimental studies.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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