Authors
Walter Wittich, PhD, FAAO, CLTV, Lindsey Sikora, MISt, Donald H. Watanabe, M.Sc, Maria Martinez

Canadian research contributions to low vision rehabilitation: A quantitative systematic review

publication date
2012-11-01
Category
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Abstract/Introduction

Purpose: Low vision rehabilitation research is a quickly growing area, due in part to the increase in the demand for services geared at older adults with age-related vision loss. Various professions collaborate to provide such rehabilitation services; however, it is currently unclear which profession takes the leading role in advancing the frontiers of low vision rehabilitation research. A recent review article proposed that in Canada, this role is held by physicians. The present study was conducted to replicate these findings under conditions of a systematic review.  

Method: A search of seven databases and a hand-search of four vision rehabilitation journals identified articles on low vision rehabilitation whose first author had an affiliation at a Canadian institution. Data on professional credentials, funding source, and study content was tabulated.


Conclusion/Results

Results: Of the 1,870 references, data from 215 eligible articles were extracted. The top four author credentials were optometrists (with or without PhD; 56 papers, 26.0%), followed by researchers with PhDs only (48 papers, 22.3%), researchers with master’s degrees (43 papers, 20.0%), and medical doctors (with or without PhD; 39 papers, 18.1%). Vision rehabilitation journals published 38 per cent of all papers, followed by ophthalmology (27%) and optometry journals (22%). Publications in the past 11 years amounted to over 50 per cent of the output over the 64-year publication history in this field in Canada, 70 percent of which were based in universities.  

Conclusion: The results reflect the mosaic structure of low vision rehabilitation research in Canada, highlighting collaborations among researchers, clinicians, funding sources and rehabilitation agencies. Given its multidisciplinary nature, low vision rehabilitation research seems to be driven by collaboration among the professions.


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  • I haven't actually used the optometrist side, so my review is limited to the vision therapy offered.  This office was recommended by my occupational therapist for the treatment of my double vision following a stroke.


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  • Love this location. I had a brain injury accident from day one one. All the team make you feel you still important and hope in the horizon after when the medical system fell you miserably. Dr. Ikeda very professional and very understanding about your issue. Two tombs up.


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  • My husband and I were immediately impressed with Dr Ikeda. I was hit by a car while cycling which caused broken bones and three brain injuries. The brain injuries caused double vision. Dr. Ikeda examined my eyes and got me started on vision therapy with his occupational therapist who specializes in vision therapy.  She (Chris) is absolutely great.  I am impressed with the array of tools used to help recover my binocular vision.  I am doing things I never thought were possible (balance boards etc).  Chris pushes me and keeps me motivated. I really enjoy my sessions with her.  The office staff is always friendly and they have a wonderful appointment reminder tool that makes it easy to keep my calendar up to date. I am happy the rehab center at Little Co. of Mary recommended them!!


    Teresa S.

  • The Vision Therapy is handled in a separate office through a different door from the shared waiting room. Chris, the vision therapist, has a wide and varied assortment of tools, equipment and resources to best evaluate and treat most vision issues. After just a few visits, my double vision became easier to control, using exercises developed during the therapy process. It was time well-spent.


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  • I have been coming here since I can remember. I love it here. The staff is so amazing and nice. They explain everything they gonna do and never make you feel rushed. Dr. Ikeda has always been my doctor and I would never want another one. He is the doctor for my whole family and is always asking how everyone is doing. I am also so crazy about picking out my frames and have to try so many and each person who helps me take the time and lets me try them all on. I would never want to go anywhere else! I definitely would recommend this office to anyone looking for a great eye doctor.


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