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734 Caledonia Ave, Victoria, BC
205-1825 Bowen Road, Nanaimo, BC
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VICTORIA
734 Caledonia Ave
Victoria, BC V8T 1E5

1-250-590-7384

NANAIMO
205-1825 Bowen Road
Nanaimo, BC V9S 1H1

1-250-591-0270

Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation

Vision is fundamentally a function of the brain. The way we read, catch a flying object, balance, look at a computer screen, or make sense of a busy environment all comes down to how the brain interprets the information the eyes provide.

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Traumatic brain injury such as a concussion or stroke, or diseases such as MS, cerebral palsy, or chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), can result in potentially devastating visual problems. There are also a number of inherited brain conditions which can similarly prevent the normal development of the visual system.

digital eye

Is a Brain Injury or Concussion Affecting
Your Vision?


The effect these have on the neuro-visual system won’t always be noticeable early on, as many health care providers and therapists lack the training and/or skills to recognize when neural-visual problems are affected by brain damage. Even when they are recognized, the treatment needs to be provided by an optometrist or vision therapist trained in neuro-optometric rehabilitation. Our neuro-optometric professionals can effectively treat and rehabilitate the vision-related problems in those who have or are suffering from visual deficits and dysfunction resulting from brain injury or disease.

The Vision Therapy Center at Opto-mization NeuroVisual Performance provides advanced neuro-optometric rehabilitation from our clinic in Victoria, British Columbia. We work with patients to help them improve visual function, alleviate symptoms, and regain their quality of life. We provide neuro-optometric rehabilitation to patients from Victoria, Nanaimo, Duncan, and Vancouver Island.

What is Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation?


The brain is surprisingly elastic, meaning it can rewire and retrain itself after injury. Neuro-optometry—often lumped in with vision therapy—is a specialized field of optometry which works to actively retrain and reprogram the visual processing we rely on to properly interact and interpret the world around us. Neuro-optometric rehabilitation uses a highly-customized combination of visual exercises, specialized lenses, and targeted visual stimuli—often including of digital aids—to retrain the patient’s brain to process visual input properly.

At The Vision Therapy Center at Opto-mization NeuroVisual Performance, we will create a treatment plan based on the individual’s vision conditions and medical background. Neuro-optometric rehabilitation is an important component of the rehabilitative process and is essential to reclaiming full day-to-day vision functionality.

brain injury

General Symptoms of Vision Conditions Treated by
Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation


  • Spatial disorientation
  • Focusing problems
  • Double-vision (diplopia)
  • Blurred vision (asthenopia)
  • Headaches
  • Nausea and dizziness (vertigo)
  • Eye strain
  • Fatigue
  • Problems accurately gauging movement, direction, and speed
  • Trouble differentiating colors
  • Hand-eye coordination and motor problems

Frequently Asked Questions About Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation

Who is a Good Candidate for Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation? How Do I Get Started?


Anyone with the above symptoms or conditions should undergo a neuro-visual or vision therapy assessment. People with motor, perceptual, or visual problems resulting from brain injury or disease can benefit from neuro-optical rehabilitation.

It starts with a thorough history and testing of visual performance in these areas: oculomotor (tracking), binocular function (eye teaming), visual-vestibular integration (eye-inner ear integration), depth perception, and more. Below is an example of computerized eye tracking from a woman in her late sixties with a concussion. On the left is before treatment. You can see how the two eyes do not work well together. She was having trouble with reading, headaches, and dizziness. On the right is after treatment when the eyes work properly together, and she can enjoy reading and life without symptoms.

eye tracking

The Vision Therapy Center at Opto-mization NeuroVisual Performance will then craft a personalized treatment plan for your recovery.

How Long Does it Take for Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation to Work?


This depends on the severity of the condition or problem. You should experience improvements fairly quickly. Don’t expect a complete turn-around overnight, however. It’s a gradual process— it takes time to retrain the brain and eyes to function in unison in the way that they should, particularly if the cause of the vision problem was severe. The full amount of time required depends on multiple factors, including the cause, the individual patient, and compliance with the regimen.

How Much Does Neuro-Optometry or Vision Therapy Cost? Is it Covered by Insurance?


Neuro-optometry or vision therapy is not yet covered by many plans. After a motor vehicle accident, ICBC may provide coverage for examination and treatment, so check with your adjuster. Treatment cost will depend on how what type of treatment is required and for how long.

References


Faul M, Xu L, Wald MM, Coronado VG. Traumatic Brain Injury in the United States: Emergency Department Visits, Hospitalizations and Deaths

2002–2006. Atlanta (GA): Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Injury Prevention and Control; 2010.

Report to Congress on Mild Traumatic Brain Injury in the United States: Steps to Prevent a Serious Public Health Problem. Atlanta (GA): Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Injury Prevention and Control; 2003.

Ciuffreda KJ, Kapoor N, Rutner D, Suchoff IB, Han ME, Craig S. Occurrence of oculomotor dysfunctions in acquired brain injury: a retrospective analysis. Optometry 2007;78(4):155-61.

Rowe F.J. Stroke survivors’ views and experiences on impact of visual impairment. Brain and Behavior, 2017; e00778 DOI: /onlinelibrary.wiley.com

/doi/epdf/10.1002/brb3.778

Leslie S. Myopia and Accommodative Insufficiency Associated with Moderate Head Trauma, Opt Vis Dev 2009;40(1):25-31.

Cohen, Alen H. Vision rehabilitation for visual-vestibular dysfunction: The role of the neuro-optometrist, NeuroRehabilitation, vol. 32, no. 3, pp. 483-492, 2013

HAN M.E. (2007) The Role of the Neuro-Rehabilitation Optometrist. In: Elbaum J., Benson D.M. (eds) Acquired Brain Injury. Springer, New York, NY

Serving Neuro-Optometry Patients From:

Victoria | Nanaimo | Duncan | Vancouver Island | and throughout British Columbia

  • Visual Conditions Which Frequently Occur from Acquired Brain Injuries Thumbnail.jpg
    Visual, perceptual, and motor problems arise from traumatic brain injury, disease, and inherited conditions. These visual perceptual deficits can have dramatic negative effects on academic, occupational, and even athletic success. Fortunately, vision therapy can help.
  • Vestibular Dysfunction Dizzy Vertigo Thumbnail.jpg
    Your dizziness or vertigo can be caused by a mismatch between your visual and vestibular (inner ear) systems. This is called a visual-vestibular mismatch. It means that your brain is getting conflicting information about what is happening around you.