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Friday, 28 March 2008 17:45

Vision Australia came back to do a more formal assessment of Beth's vision for us. This will provide a baseline from which we can understand how she's seeing and compare against it going forward.


They placed Beth on a large black blanket/play mat, and had a number of white foam balls, from the size of a pea through to a tennis ball.  These are formally graded into sizes that correspond with a scale of vision.  So with us holding Beth, these balls were rolled on the mat in front of here at approx 1m distance, and Beth was observed for any looking and tracking of them.  Beth found this pretty difficult and was actually more interested in looking at the Vision Australia people themselves! But they did note some glances at them.


They then brought out some paddles, table tennis style, however, these paddles had black and white lines on them, each paddle with a different thickness of the line.  The largest seemed to be black and white stripes of approx 1.5cm width, down to very small, where the stripes were more like 1mm in width.    The striped paddle was hidden behind a plain paddle in front of Beth, and then the striped paddle was revealed - the plain paddle stayed where it was and striped one was slid out to one side or the other.  Again Beth was observed to see if she detected and then looked at the striped paddle.  The different gradings of stripes again was scaled to correspond with vision.  Beth liked these more than the balls and better results were observed with them.


The first time they did the tests, Beth was a little unsettled after having her feed and was more interested in making people smile and looking at any other movement in the room!  Also in the first tests, the balls and paddles were held at around 1m distant from Beth.  At the moment we know that shes not really looking that far in her general reactions with us.  However, they did get some results, and these indicates Beth was in the normal range for a four month old, although at the low end of normal.


A little while later after some discussion we noticed Beth seemed more settled, so we asked them to do the paddles again, and this time Beth was much better with them. This time they did the paddles a little closer - at around 50cm.  Beth did look at one or two more smaller stripe paddles this time, although because the distance was decreased, the scale worked out to about the same.  The result was that vision was in the normal range for her age, but a bit better this time.


It was also observed that the Nystagmus also seemed to be intermittent, although I must say that we do see if more often than not.  It does seem that there is some cortical visual impairment - we asked our neurologist whether there was any impact in the MRI to the visual cortex, and he stated that there definitely would be some cortical visual impairment (CVI).


Vision Australia provided two information sheets, one about Cortical Visual Impairment (CVI) and Congenital Nystagmus, which I will type up and put up here shortly.


Overall though, they were happy with Beth's level of vision and recommended continuing the stimulation and play that we had discussed.  They will be sending the formal results through to us shortly.


Last Updated on Thursday, 05 March 2009 19:43