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Low Vision Services

What is low vision?

Low vision is reduced vision or loss of visual field which cannot be corrected with ordinary glasses or contact lenses. Low vision can make daily activities such as reading, writing, watching television and walking difficult.

The most common causes can include:

What are some of the symptoms of low vision?

  • Central field loss: a dark hazy patch appears in the center of objects.
  • Contrast loss and glare problems: objects blend with background; lights are distracting or uncomfortable.
  • Distortion: objects appear out of shape, crooked, deformed, wavy or double.
  • Tunnel vision: objects in the center of the field of vision are visible; objects on the sides are missing.

What can I expect during a low vision evaluation?

The University Eye Center’s comprehensive low vision evaluation carefully assesses the patient’s current visual status, identifies goals and visual needs and designs an individualized rehabilitation program to meet these needs. Rehabilitative measures include a full range of low vision devices and support services, such as:

  • Prescription magnifying eyeglasses and microscopes that assist with reading.
  • Filters to reduce glare and increase contrast.
  • Electronic systems such a portable, hand-held magnifier that enlarge print for reading and writing.
  • Telescopes for seeing long distances.
  • Sunwear and lighting recommendations to maximize function.
  • Bioptic driving evaluations for patients who qualify for restricted driver’s licenses
  • Our Department of Social Work works to assist patients in maximizing the benefits of health care services through advocacy, education and referrals to the appropriate community resources.
  • Monthly low vision support groups as well as short-term individual or group counseling are available at no charge to patients and their families.

How can vision rehabilitation help?

Through training and instruction in the use of optical low vision devices and other equipment, people with low vision can maintain independence and continue to perform many everyday activities. Vision rehabilitation can help people with vision loss make the most of their remaining vision.

Scheduling an Appointment
To schedule an appointment call (212) 938-4001 or click here