Low Vision Clinic
A low vision evaluation will be performed after your eye doctor has given you a complete eye exam. The evaluation is designed to accurately measure how your vision works in the real world – seeing faces, signs, stove dials and other visual clues that guide you through your day. You will be asked many questions about your eyesight, light, glare, contrast and color and you will have the chance to discuss how declining vision is affecting your day-to-day life.
Our specially trained optometrist, Dr. Kristin Stupiansky, provides the clinical low vision examination. A clinical low vision examination is an important first step for two reasons: (1) to assure that all other avenues to improving your vision (medical, refractive, etc.) have been taken, and (2) to recommend low vision devices that will provide the optimum optical image.
Your low vision examination may include some or all of the following:
- identification and clarification of your goals
- a detailed medical history including all medications you are currently taking
- an assessment of your ocular health
- an assessment of your visual activities
- an assessment of your visual fields
- an assessment of your contrast sensitivity
- an assessment of illumination and glare difficulties
- an assessment of binocularity (ability to use both eyes together)
- an assessment of your color vision
- a refraction (your visual “prescription”)
- an assessment of low vision devices and how they may help you
- other assessments as deemed necessary
The optometrist will enhance your visual performance with spectacles, tinted lenses, or other optical means. Low vision devices are prescribed specifically for the tasks you wish to perform.
Our interdisciplinary low vision team, an optometrist, an occupational therapist, an optician and possibly staff members from the PA Bureau of Blindness and Visual Service, will develop a rehabilitation plan for you that states the goals of rehabilitation and describes how these goals will be met. Because low vision rehabilitation requires the input and motivation of the consumer to succeed, you will be included in the development and approval of the rehabilitation plan.
Medicare assignment and almost all insurances are accepted by the doctor at The Sight Center. No insurance program provides devices; however, there are resources that can sometimes be accessed to help with the cost of vision devices. We will help you find those resources.
After the evaluation is completed, the doctor may prescribe a variety of optical devices to enhance your visual functioning. Then, our staff will help you evaluate which devices work best for you and which devices you feel are appropriate to your goals.
Low vision devices may enhance or enlarge objects being viewed. They may produce an enlarged or clearer image on the retina of the eye, which then may help you use your remaining vision more effectively and comfortably.
Magnifiers and low vision devices are available for purchase at The Sight Center. These devices may be as simple as a pocket magnifying glass or as sophisticated as an electronic video magnifier. You will have time to try the devices and practice using them in our office before choosing what is best suited to your needs.