Purpose: Although there is an increasing need for primary low vision (LV) care, few studies have considered the success rates of optometric LV rehabilitation. We considered the objective success and perceived benefit obtained by 57 elderly LV patients.
Method: Tests of reading speed and questionnaires were administered in the patient's home after initial and follow-up visits to a LV clinic. Additional information was taken from the patient's clinic record.
Results: Benefits from attending the clinic were reported by 89.5% of patients and 81% of patients were regularly using low vision aids (LVA's). There was a discrepancy between ability to read 1M print in the clinic (75% of patients) and the reported ability to read regular-sized print at home (35%). Perceived benefit from visiting the clinic was strongly associated with the ability to perform daily living tasks and to read 2M print. There was some association between perceived benefit and frequency of using the LVA's, but not with duration of use.
Conclusion: The results encourage a change in emphasis during LV assessments from sustained reading to the ability to perform daily living activities.