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C. Palomo-Alvarez, C. Puell Marin; Can Yellow Lenses Improve Reading Ability in Poor Readers?. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2007;48(13):1178.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
Many poor readers have particular problems with the rapid visual processing required for reading, involving the magnocellular pathway of the visual system. It has been suggested that yellow filters can improve magnocellular function and reading ability. Moreover, previous research suggests that the processing of single words as opposed to single pseudo words or document processing cannot be assumed to be equivalent. This study investigates the effect of wearing yellow lenses for three months on reading isolated words, reading pseudo-words, reading speed and reading comprehension in children with reading difficulties.
We selected 52 poor readers without dyslexia from grades 3 to 5 (9.6 years old) of 8 primary schools in Madrid, Spain. Selection criteria were a normal IQ, a reading evaluation score within the lower 25%, best corrected visual acuity 20/20, refractive error less than ±2.00 D and no strabismus. The sample was randomly divided into two groups for each school grade: a control group (n=20) and a yellow filter group (n=32). Yellow tinted lenses with best spectacle correction were worn by each subject in the filter group for 3 months for school and homework tasks. Reading words, reading pseudo-words, reading speed and reading comprehension were measured using the Spanish reading tests PROLEC (grades 3 and 4) and PROLEC-SE (grade 5). First, the tests were completed without the yellow filter in both groups. Then, after the three months, measurements were repeated with the yellow tinted lenses (filter group) or without the lenses (control group).
There were no significant differences between the filter and control groups before treatment for each school grade. After the three months, all the variables examined increased in both groups. Improvements in reading word times, reading pseudo-words, reading speed and number of words/minute differed significantly between the two groups for the 3rd and 4th grade children (p<0.05).
Reading word times, reading pseudo-words, reading speed and number of words/minute improved after three months of wearing a yellow filter in the poor readers from grades 3 and 4, but not in the 5th grade children. This difference is probably attributable to the different visual presentations used in the test.
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