Efficacy of VR in the treatment of amblyopia – results of clinical trial

It’s here! We’re finally getting the results of a clinical trial designed to compare the effectiveness of amblyopia therapy using a VR system with the standard of care, namely, eye patching.

Data and methods

The participants in the study were fifty children, aged 4-10, who were diagnosed with a amblyopia resulting from anisometropia (i.e., a significant difference in visual acuity between the right and left eye). They were randomly divided into two groups of 25 children each. In one group, the traditional method of amblyopia therapy was used. The treatment involved eye patching for 2, 4, and 6 hours depending on baseline visual acuity (mild, moderate, or severe visual impairment). In the other group, VR-based system was applied at a frequency of 1 hour per day, 5 days per week.

Results

Visual acuity improved significantly in both groups, and the improvement was comparable or better in the VR group as compared to the patching group. We can assume that the method based on virtual reality, which is being developed and improved, may become the standard of treatment for amblyopia in the future. I am convinced that this is only the beginning of discovering the possibilities of telemedical systems in vision therapy.
The results of this study are a reason for considerable optimism! I am even more looking forward to the results of a larger and more complex study that we are preparing with the RemmedVR team. First of all, we are very interested in the effectiveness of combining patching and our VR-based methods. Each of them is a completely different way to achieve the same therapeutic goal – improving the visual acuity of the weaker eye, so perhaps their combination will give a better result than these methods used separately.

If you are interested in knowing more, I encourage you to check out these very valuable publications. Please find below four of the most interesting!

Virtual reality in the treatment of amblyopia in children and adults:

  1. Virtual Reality Game Playing in Amblyopia Therapy: A Randomized Clinical Trial – https://doi.org/10.3928/01913913-20210108-02
  2. Virtual Reality Visual Training in an Adult Patient with Anisometropic Amblyopia: Visual and Functional Magnetic Resonance Outcomes – https://doi.org/10.3390/vision5020022
  3. Improved adherence and treatment outcomes with an engaging, personalized digital therapeutic in amblyopia – https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-020-65234-3
  4. Virtual Reality Visual Training in an Adult Patient with Anisometropic Amblyopia: Visual and Functional Magnetic Resonance Outcomes – https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8163189/
Dorota Maciaszek
Dorota Maciaszek

Optometrysta i terapeuta widzenia. Lead Optometrist w zespole RemmedVR. Optometrist and vision therapist. Lead Optometrist on the RemmedVR team.

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