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Tetris-like Videogame to Treat Lazy Eye

Tetris-like Videogame to Treat Lazy Eye


Eye patches on kids with amblyopia, better known as lazy eye, are still a common sight, but this may change in the future. Experts at the Glasgow Caledonian University are testing new gaming goggles with a Tetris-style game that seem to be effective against the disorder.

Amblyiopia is a visual deficiency that usually affects only one eye. As there is no serious physical problem, this disorder can be treated by training the eye to see better; therefore, the patch to cover the good eye. The sooner it is detected, the greater the chances of success.

Researchers tested the tool on 14 children, who were asked to play the game wearing the goggles for 1 hour per day, up to 10 days. In only 5 hours, 54% of the children had improved their sight.

‘Currently it may take months for children with this condition to see any improvement,’ says Dr Dolores Conroy, of Fight for Sight, an organization that helped funding the research. ‘We hope that through the development of this treatment, the sight of children with amblyopia can be recovered much more rapidly.’

Sure that the treatment will be much more enjoyable as well.

Source: BBC News, Daily Mail

Photo credit: Caledian University

Knox, P., Simmers, A., Gray, L., & Cleary, M. (2011). An Exploratory Study: Prolonged Periods of Binocular Stimulation Can Provide an Effective Treatment for Childhood Amblyopia Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science, 53 (2), 817-824 DOI: 10.1167/iovs.11-8219

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7 Comments

  • thcellularscale
    April 6, 2012, 15:25

    So what do these goggles do? Force the two eyes to see the same thing?

    REPLY
    • Jaime Menchén@thcellularscale
      April 10, 2012, 09:40

      Both eyes see the same thing, but the ‘lazy eye’ receives a clearer image, so the brain ‘corrects’ the image. As explained by Dr Anita Simmers, the project leader of the research team: “By forcing, in a way, the child to use both eyes the brain becomes aware of the image in the lazy eye. It’s as if these cells, which were once dormant, have reactivated and regenerated.”

      REPLY
      • Amy@Jaime Menchén
        May 30, 2012, 08:20

        First, I’d just like to say that it’s really nice to have a site like this where we could all get toetgher and share our feelings/knowledge on this subject. So thanks to all those making it possible!So I’m 27 years old and have amblyopia in my left eye. It was caught too late when I was a child, so from what the doctors tell me it’s now a permanent condition. Every day I pray that a cure is discovered I really hate living my life always wondering what it’s like to see out of both eyes and wondering what I’m missing. I’m not sure of my exact vision in that eye (I’m actually going to the eye doctor this week), but if I cover my good eye, everything is basically a blur in my bad eye. The best way to explain it is that I can see that things are there, and could tell what color they are for the most part, but I can’t always tell what they are unless it’s big or a common item. When it comes to an eye chart or reading, forget it, I can’t even make out the big E on the first line, haha. It really is rather depressing!Here’s a question I haven’t really seen anyone talking about. Do you guys seem to get really tired alot?? I ALWAYS feel tired the past few years, and as much as I try to tell myself it’s something else, I really believe its my eyes (I also tried almost every other thing it could be to no avail). I feel like since my good eye is using double the strength to make up for the bad eye, it’s causing my eyes to become very tired which in effect is causing me to become very tired. I don’t even remember the last time I could actually say I went a day feeling alive and awake. It’s really very frustrating and I was wondering if anyone else experiences something like this? So that’s my story .hopefully one day SOON there will be a cure for us all! I’ll continuing researching as much as possible and will continue checking in and helping out on this site as much as I can. If anyone has any suggestions or just wants to chat, please email me at

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  • Joyce Chang
    April 24, 2012, 20:39

    I am 62 yrs. old. Severely near sighted, and only realized in past few years that I had a lazy right eye.
    My eye doctors are saying I am too old for any type of corrective actions. Very worried that this lazy right eye will soon lose all sight.
    Any suggestions? thank you…..

    REPLY
    • Jaime Menchén@Joyce Chang
      April 25, 2012, 10:53

      Dear Joyce,
      I’m sorry to hear that. Unfortunately, I’m not a doctor, so I’m not qualified to make any suggestions. I can only suggest you to look for expert advice, which you tell me you already did. I wish you the best of luck in this matter.

      REPLY
      • Norio@Jaime Menchén
        May 30, 2012, 02:22

        this- I don’t want to encourage aynone else to take matters in to there own hands like I have. I’m aware that there are certain risks involved, but I’m willing to take those risks. That’s not to say that I think other people should do it. Professionals know a lot more than me, so I’d advise people to see professionals.I’ve since done a lot more research in to eyesight, especially in the vision therapy field and have used quite a lot of techniques to exercise my vision (including occasional patching). You’d be surprised at how much material and techniques are available online. Most of the techniques don’t include patching and encourage the use of both eyes at once, so rest assured that I haven’t just plonked a patch over my eye and hoped for the best because this certainly isn’t the case.The exercises I have practiced are-Swinging, Tromboning/ Tracking, Palming, Sunning, Brock String, Hart Chart, Lifesavers, Saccades, Marsden Ball/ Bunting, Letter Pyramids…There’s too many to mention.I’ve definitely noticed a vast improvement in my left eye and it is much more responsive. The main benefits I have experienced are–My left eye actually opens of its own accord and I’m able to centrally fixate. My eye isn’t drifting as much as it did-I’m much more aware of the eyesight in my left eye. The peripheral vision is actually there now and I’m able to move my left eye with much more ease (before- I used to ignore most things to my left).-I did experience slight double vision at first, but convergence and central fixation exercises have sorted this. The next step is to seek support from a professional vision therapist, but this is difficult due to my location, finance and time constraints (I work fulltime and me and my partner own a small business). I can appreciate that this should have been my first step, but I wanted to see if any of these methods hold water first and the answer is yes- they do!I wish all the people on this forum good luck with their journeys and hope that you all achieve success in improving your vision. Don’t just give up and don’t take no for an answer!

        REPLY
  • Peter
    May 29, 2012, 20:56

    Hello Everyone,I am Rajesh from India..Please go through my case study and let me know is there any hope?? I was not hnviag any type of eye problem uptil the age of 8 yrs and and my eyesight was 6/6 in both the eyes which is measurement unit in Indian terms for normal eyesMy case is 1)At the age of 8 I have a sharp blow from the edge of a wall to the corner of my left forehead corner which made my enitre body full of blood.That day was the most sadest day in my entire life of 28 years.If god exists I would ask him please bring back that day of my life or do rewind so that I can reconcile my mistake that I have done on that day.2)Gradually in mean period within 1 year my left eye vision started declining and to say truly I was ignoring that what was happening in my eye and not reported to my parents.But the thing lateron my parents noticed that my left eye has developed squint.i.e.moving outward side direction and the time when they noticed it I have completely lost my vision with mere sight3)At the age of 10 I have undergone the squint operation and doctor told that whatever there may be improvement in vision it will be naturally and yeah he has given me glasses of minus 3.5..Jokes apart there was a mild improvement in my vison without a strong depth perception.4)At the age of 14 I have noticed that I have developed the double vision phenomena with exisiting mild vision and or term it as a LAZY EYE.5)The most important thing here I want to mention is that I am not able to see from the centre of left EYE.And whenever I try to see from centre, my brain focus or percieves the right eye information and that appears blind if my right eye is closed.My brain accepts images only when I have to squint it or turn far left to see from the side.To get more clear image squintness increases and offcourse uptil certain level.I hope you people have understand what I am trying to say..Brian does not accept any image from center of left eye..and when try the concentration moves to right eye.6)One more thing to say that I have noticed that I have better vision in left eye eventhough being a double vison when both the eyes are open.7)Couple of years back when I have tested to other opthalmalogist..she has told me this problem i.e.Temporal Pollar..8)Right now I am 28 is there any hope that My left eye can be cured uptil certain extent Please let me know.With Regards,RajeshMY Yahoo mail id is

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