Watching Television and Movies with Low Vision Abstract Television, the internet and movies are a major source of information and entertainment. People with reduced central vision, the major form of low vision (visual impairment) in America, often have difficulty using these media. That difficulty arises because people with central retinal impairment from conditions such as age-related macular degeneration and diabetic macular edema are forced to use eccentric vision. Compared with the fovea, eccentric vision is impaired by a loss of spatial resolution, an elevation of crowding and difficulties making and maintaining eye movements. Currently, rehabilitation for television viewing is very limited, and most people with AMD express dissatisfaction with their viewing experience. Available strategies include sitting closer and purchasing a large monitor (room ergonomics difficult), telescope (limited field of view), Fresnel lens over screen (poor image quality) and audio description (little additional information provided). Magnification is the most effective form of rehabilitation for reduced central vision;however, simple electronic magnification causes restriction of the field of view. This can cause a loss of information and context and diminishes the experience. We will develop and evaluate three novel methods of modifying electronic moving images as assistive devices for people with reduced central vision. All three methods are based on magnification, but also employ dynamic and intelligent methods of reducing the loss of context and are combined with techniques to assist eye movement control. By intelligent, we mean that the magnification method makes use of information about the moving image to vary the way that the image is magnified. That information may come from the viewer, other viewers, eye movements, or it may be inherent in the moving image itself. Image-processing techniques will be employed to extract such information from the moving images, and to modify the moving images that are displayed. To better deploy these magnification methods, we will include studies to demonstrate that people with reduced central vision can use certain image modifications and that the modifications do not produce unsatisfactory images. We will systematically develop and evaluate each of the three magnification methods in studies designed to test whether there are objective and subjective benefits to people with central vision loss. In the process, we will develop novel methods for the assessment of benefit of moving-image modification (enhancement), an area that is poorly developed. In summary, we propose to develop and evaluate novel vision rehabilitation aids that will improve the ability to use television, the internet and movies, and thereby improve the quality of life of people with reduced central vision.

Public Health Relevance

Watching Television and Movies with Low Vision Narrative Most people with macular degeneration, the major form of low vision (visual impairment) in America, often have difficulty viewing television, the internet and movies, which are a major source of information and entertainment. We propose to develop and evaluate three novel assistive visual aids that will improve the ability to watch and enjoy television and movies, and thereby, improve the quality of life of people with reduced central vision.

Agency
National Institute of Health (NIH)
Institute
National Eye Institute (NEI)
Type
Research Project (R01)
Project #
5R01EY019100-04
Application #
8474765
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZRG1-ETTN-E (92))
Program Officer
Wiggs, Cheri
Project Start
2010-06-01
Project End
2014-05-31
Budget Start
2013-06-01
Budget End
2014-05-31
Support Year
4
Fiscal Year
2013
Total Cost
$442,320
Indirect Cost
$214,320
Name
Schepens Eye Research Institute
Department
Type
DUNS #
073826000
City
Boston
State
MA
Country
United States
Zip Code
02114
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