Low vision, a collective term for vision loss that cannot be reversed by glasses, medication, or surgery, is one of the major areas of research and treatment at the Wilmer Eye Institute. The work has led to novel solutions for some patients. Those with vision impairment suffering from macular degeneration (a disease that damages the center of the retina, called the macula) and other vision problems receive detailed visual-function testing, evaluation and rehabilitation.
At the Low Vision Rehabilitative Service, a multidisciplinary team of doctors and rehabilitative specialists works closely with the patient, family, friends and the referring doctor to assist an individual in regaining function lost by visual impairment. This typically includes addressing vision issues causing problems with reading, driving and activities of daily living. Home visits and other services provided by our occupational therapy staff outside of the Low Vision office are limited to a maximum of 60 miles round trip and within the State of Maryland.
A typical low vision evaluation involves a functional assessment including a low vision refraction and prescription of magnifiers, telescopes and assistive technology as appropriate. In addition, visual skills training such as eccentric viewing and blindness skills are provided as are referrals to comprehensive blind rehabilitation centers. The low vision service does not have minimum vision requirements, but works with all patients who have functional impairment due to an eye disease or condition.
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