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Can retraining the eyes combat hemianopia?

A new study will assess the affect of providing eye scanning training to stroke survivors

Pixabay/Laura Artal
New research will investigate the effectiveness of eye scanning training in improving the vision and everyday independence of stroke survivors.

The collaboration between Fight for Sight and the Stroke Association was announced on World Stroke Day (October 29).

A group of 71 stroke survivors that receive eye scanning training will be compared to a control group that does not receive the training.

The study participants will be monitored for six months with information collected during routine eye clinic visits.

Eye scanning training encourages stroke survivors to look into the ‘blind’ side of their visual field, which can improve their adaptation to loss of vision.

The study will be carried out by University of Liverpool researchers and incorporate a paper-based visual scanning programme, with participants able to practise at home.

Professor Fiona Rowe, from the University of Liverpool, highlighted that the research builds on a promising pilot trial.

“Visual scanning training has the potential to benefit stroke survivors by improving their adaptation to hemianopia and it can be done at anytime, anywhere. There is also potential for cost-savings in the NHS and social care sector through maximising stroke survivors’ use of their remaining vision, and therefore lessening its impact on daily life activities,” she emphasised.