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Comparison of visual assessment tests in multiply handicapped children


The aims of this study were to compare acuity estimates achieved with visual evoked potential (VEP) and acuity card techniques and to examine the success rates of each test in a group of multiply handicapped children. Subjects were 52 children (3-183 months) with multiple handicaps associated with prematurity (n = 17), congenital anomalies (n = 16), hypoxic insult (n = 10) and other disorders (n = 9). Success rates for completing the tests were: VEP 88% and acuity cards 85% (Keeler or Cardiff). The acuity card tests were less likely to be successfully completed in the severely disabled (p<0.05) and in those children with nystagmus (p<0.05). When both acuity cards were successful, results agreed to within ±1.75 octaves. Acuity card thresholds were significantly correlated with VEP thresholds (p<0.02), but thresholds achieved with VEPs were better in children with poor vision.


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Correspondence to R T Mackie.

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Mackie, R., McCulloch, D., Saunders, K. et al. Comparison of visual assessment tests in multiply handicapped children. Eye 9, 136–141 (1995).

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  • Acuity cards
  • Multiple handicap
  • Visual acuity
  • Visual evoked potentials

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