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Can a TBI cause a loss of eyesight?

With roughly eighty percent of traumatic brain injuries resulting in vision deficits, it puts into perspective how damaging a traumatic brain injury can be in the long term – especially when your sight is concerned. Since there’s a wide range in brain injuries, the ones that may result with visual disturbances are:
  – Aneurysm repair
  – Post neurosurgery
  – Whiplash/concussion injury
  – Vehicle accidents
  – Strokes

If one happens to be struggling with a Parkinson’s Disease diagnosis, multiple sclerosis and myasthenia gravis are extremely common deficits to one’s vision.

Perfect Vision Isn’t Enough

Many have the assumption that if one passes a basic vision exam with a perfect score, they’re not vulnerable or have no chance at having difficulty with their vision. However, this is due to the fact that the general public assumes that 20/20 vision is “normal” or perfect. Given that this is only a measurement of a single visual function, it only displays how well an eye can detail an object twenty feet away. 

Sure, visual detail on an object in the distance is incredibly important, yet there’s so much eye activity that requires optimal function. So when considering an individual has 20/20 vision, it should be noted that visual acuity is only one of the many vision exams.

What Is A Comprehensive Vision Rehabilitation Evaluation?

Being different from most basic eye exams, a comprehensive vision rehabilitation evaluation tests all vision skills that are regularly used for everyday optimal function. In addition to testing the health of one’s eyes and their visual acuity, the vision rehabilitation evaluations cover several different areas. Vision rehabilitation optometrists who specialize in this area perform tests such as:
  – Peripheral vision
  – Focus (Accommodation)
  – Depth Perception & Binocular Vision
  – Visual tracking
  – Additional visual functions that determine perception.

In the event a visual deficit exists in one of these categories, it can make balancing, moving, reading, returning to routine tasks, and functioning independently significantly more difficult.

Post Brain Trauma & Vision Disorders

The common vision disorder that occurs after a brain injury is double vision. Being a frequent complaint of individuals who have had severe brain/head trauma, it happens when both eyes deviate and do not align to focus at a single point.

In the event of strabismus (a cosmetic eye deviation), it can be clearly visible as both eyes (or one eye) deviates down, up, in, or out. However, there’s many cases in which the eye deviation isn’t visible since the deviation might be smaller than the cases listed above.

To make matters more interesting, instances where patients struggle with unique eye issues are not rare. Deviations such as cranial nerve palsies of the 6th, 4th, or 3rd oculomotor nerve can create double vision as well. Double vision can create such issues as:
  – Difficulty performing everyday activities.
  – Difficulty reading.
  – Difficulty walking.
  – Difficulty with balance.
  – Dizziness
So to boil double vision down to its nuts and bolts, it impairs one’s ability to properly percieve three dimensional vision and deficits one’s hand/eye coordination. Double vision will make an individual seem incredibly clumsy, making simple movements (such as walking down or up stairs) increasingly difficult.

Head Injury & Double Vision? Get Treatment

If you happen to have a vision issue after a head injury, get help as soon as possible. Resolving these issues will not only make one feel better in regards to their vision, but doing so will allow one to progress with other therapies they may be recieving.

In many instances, a doctor will provide a eye patch, which may be unsightly and will not restore one’s binocular vision to normal. In order to treat double vision, it should include one or several different therapies such as vision rehabilitation therapy or prism compensation in eyeglasses. However, following vision rehabilitation thoroughly will allow one to know what type of treatment is required in order to heal.

Defects & Visual Field

Occurring frequently in head injuries, the loss of one’s peripheral vision is fairly common. For example: If a stroke occurs on the left side of the brain, the vision field may be lost on the right. Same can be said on the right side, as vision may be lost on the left. Peripheral vision loss can occur after aneurysm repair or neurosurgery. Loss of one’s peripheral vision is extremely disorienting, as even the slightest movement can be difficult.

Considering the information above, getting immediate attention after a traumatic brain injury is essential – especially if your vision becomes impaired. Secondly, such a horrifying experience deserves compensation. Thankfully, we have a lawyer for a severe TBI in the event you suffer extended damage from a traumatic brain injury. Contact us today for further information on how we can help you in this time of need.


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