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The nature of eye movements in Cerebral Palsy: A case study on the effects of posture on oculomotor control and visual function

1 May 2000


A case study was performed on a child with cerebral palsy to evaluate the effects of providing postural support on visual performance, including oculomotor control, visual acuity, and reading comprehension. The hypothesis was that providing postural support for specific visual tasks would help the subject perform at a level of maximal efficiency for learning. We tested the subject with and without postural support, and measured the effects on visual acuity, oculomotor accuracy and reading comprehension. Oculomotor skills were measured by using a modified NSUCO Oculomotor Test and Visagraph II. The Visagraph II was also used to test reading comprehension. Postural support was provided in the form of a cervical collar. Results suggest that postural support does not improve visual acuity or oculomotor control. Instead, postural support seemed to impede those precise visual tasks by restraining the child's head movement. We have found that in this case study, this subject had learned to use head movement for reading and precise visual tasks. Postural head support seemed to restrict the head movement, thereby restricting the child's visual function.


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