Understanding prisms and their role in treating post trauma vision syndrome

Published on
January 18, 2023

Prism lenses are commonly prescribed by neuro optometrists to correct an imbalance in the eyes and change the perception of space for a patient with post trauma vision syndrome. In this blog, we will discuss the use of prisms for post-traumatic vision syndrome (PTVS) and how they can help those who have suffered from a traumatic brain injury.

What are prisms?

Prism lenses are used to shift light in the eyes, which can help to correct an imbalance in the eyes. They are commonly used during treatment for post-traumatic vision syndrome. The most common approach is using small amounts of base-in prism. Oftentimes, this can be in the order of about a quarter to as much as one or more prism diopters of base-in.

What is a yoked prism? Does it improve balance?

A yoked prism is a type of optical prism that is used to correct for double vision, which is a condition where the eyes are misaligned and the brain receives double vision. The prism redirects light entering the eye, allowing the brain to correctly perceive a single image.

Yoked prisms can help improve balance in some cases, as it can help correct for binocular vision disorders that can affect balance. Strabismus, for example, can lead to a lack of depth perception which can make it difficult to judge distances and maintain balance. By using a yoked prism to correct for misaligned eyes, it can help to improve depth perception and therefore improve balance. In addition, yoked prisms can be used as part of a vision therapy program to improve binocular vision, which in turn can improve balance and coordination.

However, it is important to note that balance is a complex issue that can be caused by a variety of factors such as inner ear problems, muscle weakness, or neurological conditions. Therefore, yoked prisms may not be suitable for all cases, and other forms of treatment may be needed to address balance issues.

What is post trauma vision syndrome (PTVS)?

Post trauma vision syndrome (PTVS) is a condition that can occur immediately after a traumatic brain injury, but it can also persist for years post-injury. In some cases, patients have been three to four years out from an injury and still present with persistent symptoms. The condition can be addressed quickly in an inpatient setting, and patients are usually grateful to find out that there are things that can still be done about it.

The goal of treatment for PTVS is to refer patients to specialists who specialize in the use of specialized prisms, specialized optics, and various other treatments. The Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation Association (NORA), Optometric Extension Program Foundation (OEPF), and the College of Optometry and Vision Development (COVD) are organizations that work to educate optometrists on the use of prisms for PTVS.

Who is at risk for post traumatic vision syndrome?

Post traumatic vision syndrome can occur at any age, from young children who have suffered a fall to seniors who have suffered a stroke. It is important to note that anyone who has suffered a brain injury can benefit from the help that is provided by our neuro-optometrists who specialize in treating post trauma vision syndrome.

If you don’t already have a trusted optometrist, you might begin your search online by entering “neuro optometrist near me”.

Schedule a neuro-optometric evaluation with Dr. Ikeda

If you or a loved one has suffered a traumatic brain injury, it is important to seek the help of a specialist who can provide specialized prisms and other treatments to help alleviate symptoms and improve your visual function. Contact our neuro optometrist to learn more about post-traumatic vision syndrome and how it can be treated. To schedule a neuro-optometric evaluation, please call (562) 925-6591. Patients with functional vision issues following a head injury or stroke visit our clinic from all over California, and we are proud to be a leading provider of neuro-optometric rehabilitation services for patients from Bellflower, Long Beach, Lakewood, and Los Angeles.


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.

Claire A.

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.

Jim K.

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.

Joe M.

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.

Kayla W.

This is not for the eye exam but for the frames selection portion. I brought my prescription from Kaiser here with my VSP insurance. The reception staff was very polite and professional.  Manny helped me to pick out frames and explain my coverage.  Very helpful and patient not like the individual at the other place I rated here on Yelp.  I was running late and he still helped me and was not bothered at all.  I am so glad I came here ..........very pleased.

Very professional staff and pleasant.

Daniel G.
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