‘Eye Retraining’ for Sight Loss Caused By Stroke
The link between vision loss and stroke has been a subject matter for a long time that the doctors have been working hard on to find out ways for treatment. Recently, a study by Liverpool University has been announced to start on December 1st, 2020.
This new study is focused on testing the possibility and effectiveness of a treatment for ‘retraining’ the eyes for people who experience a loss of vision after stroke. In light of the efforts and funding by Fight for Sight and the Stroke Association, the study aims to establish a new standard of care for stroke survivors.
The stroke may cause vision loss or blindness nearly in one of each three stroke survivors. This loss of vision usually comes right after the stroke immediately and there is no cure or treatment for it. As it is called “Hemianopia” in medical terms, it certainly brings a devastating impact on the quality of daily life.
During the study, the patients are taking visual scanning training sessions and they scan into the ‘blind’ side of their visual field. In this adaptation, the patients will be asked to repeatedly practice locating targets in both the ‘seeing’ and ‘blind’ sides of their visual field.
Since it is cost-effective and therefore may become available for all stroke survivors to practice training at home, paper-based visual scanning training material will be used during the study.
The study will be carried out by having two separate groups of stroke survivors. The first group consists of stroke survivors who receive eye scanning training, and the second group members are the ones without eye scanning training.
These two groups will be followed for six months to see if the treatment can improve visual performance and independence in everyday activities. All the information will be analyzed during routine eye clinic visits.
The study is being led by Professor Fiona Rowe from Liverpool University and it will build on an initial promising pilot trial and address an area of treatment for which there is limited evidence.
With its potential benefit to stroke survivors by improving their adaptation to hemianopia, the visual scanning training is very cost-effective and it can be applied at any time, anywhere.
The visual scanning training research study will start on December 1st, 2020.