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Catherine Choi, Jennifer Wallis, Mary Lou Jackson; The Effect of Comprehensive Vision Rehabilitation on Self-Administration of Medication in Patients with Central Vision Loss. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2013;54(15):5337.
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Central vision loss can have significant implications in a patient’s ability to perform activities of daily living, including health-related tasks, such as self-administration of medication. Vision Rehabilitation programs offer strategies to aid patients in coping with such tasks. The purpose of this study was to analyze the effect of comprehensive vision rehabilitation on medication self-administration in a cohort of low vision patients.
37 patients with central vision loss with acuity ranging from 20/400 to 20/40 in the better eye and normal cognitive abilities by Mini-Mental State Exam were enrolled as part of a larger study. Participants read the instructions on a standardized prescription label. In addition, patients reported their ability to perform health-related tasks. All measurements were taken at the start of vision rehabilitation (T1), one month later at the beginning of occupational therapy (T2), and at the termination of vision rehabilitation (T3).
Complete data sets were available from 23 patients and included in the analysis. When patients first presented to vision rehabilitation, most participants (57%) were either not able to read the medication label at all or could only partially read it. At T2, 78% and at T3, 90% were able to read the label. These improvements with rehabilitation were statistically significant, as shown by a main effect of time, F(2,44)=18.4, MSE=.86, p< .001. Patients’ reports on their ability to manage health-related tasks agreed with the observed improvement in reading with vision rehabilitation. Patients reported less interference from their vision loss on (A) opening medications and (B) reading medication labels and instructions; F(2,44)=4.67, MSE=.59, p=.018; F(2,44)=13.29, MSE=1.01, p<.001. Reported difficulty and importance of generally ‘taking care of one’s health’ did not change over time.
While patients perceive less interference with managing medications, they are also observed to read medications more accurately and efficiently post-rehabilitation compared to pre-rehabilitation. Comprehensive vision rehabilitation, including occupational therapy, can assist significantly with medication management.
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