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Donald Calvin Fletcher, Ronald Schuchard; Are Patterns of Magnifier Selection Changing in Low Vision Patients?. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2019;60(9):4032.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
To examine magnifier selection patterns in low vision patients in 2013 and 5 years later in 2018. Is there a shift to more patients utilizing electronic digital magnifiers over this 5-year period?
The records of 60 consecutive unique patients evaluated in Dr. Fletcher’s practice in 2013 and 68 patients in 2018 were compared for diagnosis, age, gender, level of visual acuity in the better eye (ETDRS at 1 meter) and types of magnifiers selected. Vision enhancement devices were broken into four categories: electronic (EL), close focus spectacle (SP), handheld (HH) and stand magnifiers (ST).
The median (range) ages for the 2013 and 2018 groups were 85.5 (64-97) and 85.0 (27-99) years old. The visual acuity median (range) for the 2013 and 2018 groups were 0.72 (0.30-1.22) and 0.76 (0.30-2.0) logMAR. The two groups both had about 80% AMD with 20% other diagnoses including DR and RP and both groups had about 60%/40% female/male ratio. 63% of the 2018 group used electronic devices and 22% used spectacle devices compared to 30% and 38% for the 2013 group (both statistically significantly different). The 2018 group used 28% hand held illumination and 21% stand illumination compared to 23% and 20% for the 2013 group (both not statistically significantly different)
The low vision patients in 2013 and 2018 were similar in all regards but the magnifier selection pattern shifted significantly. Over this 5 year interval more patients are selecting electronic magnifiers over optical devices. Stand and Handheld magnifier selection has remained fairly constant but less people are now selecting close focus spectacle magnification. This may be due to a decrease in price of these devices, new and better devices becoming available and geriatric technophobia dissipating. Low vision practices should be aware that training needs to be provided in the use of these devices and that generous stocking may be prudent.
This abstract was presented at the 2019 ARVO Annual Meeting, held in Vancouver, Canada, April 28 - May 2, 2019.
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