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Conference Roundup

Is augmented reality the future of age-related macular degeneration?

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A novel augmented reality (AR) headset can enhance functional vision in patients with severe age-related macular degeneration with central scotoma, according to a presentation by Linda Lam, MD, MBA at the 2020 ASRS Virtual Meeting.

Dr Lam said patients using the AR device were better able to read letters in a word and recognize familiar faces.

The device was tested in a single arm, crossover study including 10 eyes with advanced age-related macular degeneration. A Self-Calibration Visual Field Edge Detection Test was preformed using the AR device to identify the patient’s scotoma that correlated to the area of non-vision with a Modified Real-Time Streaming Video (MRTSV). The self-calibration test results were compared to Fundus Autofluorescence of each eye.

Patients saw an increase in functional vision in reading logMAR eye chart and in facial recognition. Without magnification, BCVA improved from 20/200 to 20/80 and an improvement up to 5 lines on logMAR chart was seen.

Utilizing this technique does not remove scotoma, Dr Lam said, but moving images within geographicalscotoma area to adjacentsighted retina areas helps a person see all letters in a word.

Reference
Lam J, et al. Augmented reality device Oculenz- role in improving functional vision in patients with age-related macular degeneration. Presented at: 2020 ASRS Virtual Meeting.

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