Date of Award

2015

Degree Type

Capstone (Entry-Level OTD)

Degree Name

Doctorate of Occupational Therapy (OTD)

Abstract

Approximately one-third of the human brain controls visual anatomy or transmits and registers visual information (Kapoor & Ciuffreda, 2002). Because of this, acquired brain injuries ABI can frequently cause visual impairment. Following an ABI, it is important for visual deficits to be taken into account and addressed during occupational therapy evaluation and treatment. Although considered a primary sense for obtaining information, vision is often ignored or overlooked in rehabilitation programs. Vision screens should be conducted and collaborations and referrals to a neuro-optometrists made. There is a lack of research regarding the benefits of visual interventions with individuals that are more than two years post-injury. The project looked at benefits of addressing visual deficits in individuals who have experienced a ABI and are five years or more post-injury. A vison program was established at a day enrichment center for individuals’ years post-injury. Vision programs were established in collaboration with a neuro optometrist and performed at an inpatient brain injury rehabilitation center. Two different case studies and a pilot study detail the benefits of a comprehensive vison program in individuals who have experienced a traumatic brain injury. A pilot study was conducted to monitor the benefits of development of a program to address visual deficits effecting reading with individuals more than five years post-brain injury. There is potential for ocular motor deficits such as pursuits and saccades to improve with continued training and for improvements in visual deficits to improve performance in activities of daily living.

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