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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 68  |  Issue : 6  |  Page : 1136-1142

Use of augmented reality technology for improving visual acuity of individuals with low vision

1 Department of Bio-Chemistry, Shanmugha Arts, Science, Technology and Research Academy (SASTRA) University, Thanjavur; Optometrist, Low Vision Care Clinic, Sankara Nethralaya, Tamil Nadu, India
2 Medical Research Foundation, Sankara Nethralaya, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
3 Shri Bhagwan Mahavir Vitreoretinal Services, Sankara Nethralaya, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Rajiv Raman
Shri Bhagwan Mahavir Vitreoretinal Services, 18 College Road, Sankara Nethralaya, Chennai - 600 006, Tamil Nadu
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijo.IJO_1524_19

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Purpose: The objective of this study was to analyze the visual acuity improvement in patients with low vision using augmented reality device who presented to the low vision care (LVC) clinic at a tertiary eye care center. Methods: A prospective study of 100 patients with low vision who were referred to the LVC clinic between July and December 2018 was done. Demographic data and visual acuity improvement assessed using augmented reality (AR) technology paired with Samsung Gear headset were documented. Results: Out of 100 patients, 74 were male and 26 were female. The median age of the overall patients was 36 (25.5) years. In 100 patients, 21% patients were found to have central field loss (CFL), 35% patients have peripheral field loss (PFL), and 44% patients were found to have overall blurred vision (OBV). Majority of the subjects with CFL (47%) and OBV (37%) has a moderate visual impairment and in PFL group (26%), severe visual impairment was more. Cone dystrophy (9%) was found to be the major cause of CFL group, retinitis pigmentosa (22%) in the case of PFL group, and optic atrophy (10%) in the case of OBV group. The median distance visual acuity 0.9 log MAR improved to 0.2 log MAR (P < 0.0001) and median near visual acuity 0.4 log MAR improved to 0.1 log MAR with a P value of < 0.0001 using AR device. Conclusion: The use of an AR device can help patients with low vision to improve their residual vision for better visual performance.

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