Low Vision News

For low vision specialists and those who consult them

Highlights of Vision 2011

I am now back from the 10th International Conference on Low Vision (Vision 2011) in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. I was very impressed.

The most interesting thing for me was that there are lots of Randomised Controlled Trials (RCTs) in progress in low vision research. Well designed RCTs are a powerful tool to investigate the effect of an intervention (such as a training programme) and are essential for us to really understand the benefits of different types of low vision rehabilitation. They are also increasingly necessary for us to continue receiving funding for low vision services (whether that funding is from the state or from an insurer).

Research highlights for me included Else Havik’s work on navigation of shared spaces (streets with no kerbs, signs or road markings, where drivers are encouraged to drive considerately); Kez Latham’s work on likelihood of success with low vision aids (if your near vision is poorer then N22 with a +2.50DS spectacle add and your contrast sensitivity is worse then 1.05 log units you’re unlikely to read newsprint with a magnifier); and Carlos Aguilar’s work on gaze-contingent magnification in macular disease.

I didn’t like everything about the meeting: as is often the case, there were many clashes on the programme and sometimes I had to choose to miss something which looked interesting. I didn’t like the keynote speaker being interrupted as the junior government minister attending the opening ceremony wanted to leave (and we had to stand as a sign of respect, although the speaker was far more deserving of that respect); and the weather was far too hot for me! Having said that, I’m looking forward to the 11th International meeting: Vision 2014, Melbourne.


2 responses to “Highlights of Vision 2011

  1. G F Mueden March 3, 2011 at 3:12 pm

    The remark on Kez Latham’s work comes as close as anything I have seen that couples optometrics to the ability to read, but this layman needs some help understanding it.
    #1 Is there a 20/300 style equivalent of “N22 with a +2.50DS spectacle” for acuity?
    And, #2, is there a percentage equivalent of “1.05 log” for contrast sensitivity?

  2. Kez Latham March 22, 2011 at 9:42 am

    Thanks for your interest!
    A reading acuity of N22 with a +2.50D add is the equivalent of 0.75logMAR. In Snellen terms, that’s around 6/34 (in metres) or 20/115 (in feet) in broad brushstrokes. Remember that reading acuity won’t be equivalent to distance acuity though (which is more commonly measured in Snellen, however much better logMAR is!)
    Secondly, 1.05 logCS is 7.8% contrast.

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