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Mitul C Mehta, Brian T Kim, REBECCA KAMMER, Dave Watola; Eyedaptic Augmented Reality Visual Aid Leads to Improved Reading Speed and Accuracy in Individuals with AMD. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2018;59(9):633.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
As a first step toward demonstrating effectiveness of a novel augmented reality (AR) device for improvement in daily function in visually impaired patients, even for users in the oldest old age category, a case series of three individuals with age-related macular degeneration (AMD) used the device to improve reading speed and accuracy.
Three individuals with vision loss from AMD had a complete ophthalmic examination and bifocal spectacles prescribed within the prior 6 months. The users were all male ranging in age from 85 to 91, and all had moderate impairment with acuity better than 20/200. User 1 had best visual acuity of 20/60, OD and OS, user 2 OD 20/60, and OS 20/80, and user 3 OD 20/100, and OS 20/80. The user's distance prescription was placed inside the Eyedaptic AR prototype device. Users participated in a 20 minute training protocol and then were asked to read several paragraphs ranging from 36 to 5 point font using their habitual bifocal and again using the AR device. Paragraphs of similar size and complexity were used to reduce practice effect. The number of errors made and the time to complete the same number of words at each size font was recorded.
All users could read 36 point font with their habitual bifocals with reading speeds ranging from 89-165 words per minute (WPM), and each user was unable to read the smallest font (5 point). User 1 and 3 began to slow in reading speed at 20 point font (14 and 33 WPM respectively). User 2 slowed at 8 point font at 72 WPM. With the Eyedaptic device, users 2 and 3 were able to read at the 5 point font size with a mean reading speed of 132 WPM and few errors. Although user 1 could not comfortably read 5 point font, he was able to read at 8pt font with a speed of 32 WPM (from 21 WPM with his bifocals).
This small case series demonstrated that the Eyedaptic AR device could be used in the oldest age group of patients with macular disease to access extremely small print with only a short training period. Future studies will explore timing and ease of performance of other activities of daily life such as reading signs or managing medication. Most low vision devices assist with one visual task per device, thereby requiring multiple devices. Devices such as Eyedaptic may be a feasible replacement for several low vision devices and should be considered during a comprehensive low vision rehabilitation plan.
This is an abstract that was submitted for the 2018 ARVO Annual Meeting, held in Honolulu, Hawaii, April 29 - May 3, 2018.
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