The use of accurate visual acuity measurements in clinical anti-cataract formulation trials

Ophthalmic Physiol Opt. 1988;8(4):397-401. doi: 10.1111/j.1475-1313.1988.tb01176.x.


A standardized visual acuity technique is presented for use in anti-cataract drug trials. Ferris Logmar charts were used in repeatability studies of vision, visual acuity and pinhole visual acuity measurements for twenty normal subjects (mean (+/- SD) age 64 +/- 6.3 years). Visual acuity measurements were shown to be the most repeatable and thought to be the most suitable for monitoring cataract progression. Repeated visual acuity measurements were made on 29 cataractous eyes of 15 subjects (mean (+/- SD) age 67.8 +/- 7.2 years). A Logmar score change of 0.1 (one line) was shown to be a statistically significant change. This value can be used in statistical analyses of drug efficacy. The normal data gives a mean Logmar visual acuity of 1.15 (Snellen equivalent 6/5). This indicates the inadequacy of using 6/6 as a norm value for visual acuity, even for older patients. As the possibility of reversal of cataract theoretically exists in the early stages of cortical and capsular cataracts, patients with small amounts of these types of cataract are ideal patients for anti-cataract formulation trials. The normal visual acuity results indicate that the inclusion criteria for clinical trials can include patients with cataracts with visual acuity as good as 6/6.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Animals
  • Cataract / drug therapy*
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Vision Tests / instrumentation
  • Vision Tests / standards*
  • Visual Acuity*