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Functional Vision Examination

Functional vision refers to how all parts of your visual system — comprising the eyes, brain and visual pathways — collaborate to help you experience and interact with the world around you. The only way to determine that all visual skills are working properly together is by having a functional eye examination.

Not all optometrists have the advanced training or equipment needed to perform an accurate evaluation of the entire visual system. Our eye doctor is the only double-board certified eye doctor in the Philadelphia area with professional certification and experience in Vision Therapy and Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation. At Holistic Vision, we provide comprehensive functional eye examinations for children and adults in our Jenkintown, Pennsylvania, eye care clinic. With a holistic approach to eye care, we provide integrative therapies for a wide range of visual problems.

When is a functional vision examination needed?

This specialized eye exam is recommended for adults and children whenever symptoms of vision problems are exhibited, including:

  • Double vision
  • Dizziness
  • Frequent headaches, especially when triggered by reading
  • Eye strain, fatigue
  • Poor depth perception
  • Reversing letters when reading; trouble reading from left to right
  • Difficulty with reading comprehension
  • Poor coordination; trouble catching or hitting a ball
  • Overall clumsiness

What happens during a functional eye examination?

To help get to the root cause of your symptoms or your child’s symptoms, our eye doctor will begin by reviewing your health and eye history, focusing particularly on any visual complaints and problems. Our assessment of visual skills is personalized, paying attention to each individual’s unique condition and considering overall well-being and ability to function in daily life. Typically, the entire exam takes approximately 60-90 minutes.

The evaluation will usually include an inspection of eye teaming, binocular space perception, 3D depth perception (stereopsis), color vision, visual motor integration, eye tracking movements, and eye movements while reading. We will also assess:

  • Visual acuity
  • Convergence and divergence – when looking at an object in the distance and at a near object
  • Eye alignment
  • Focusing ability
  • Ability to switch fixation between two targets
  • Visual field
  • Ocular health
  • Perceptual testing (if necessary) – including testing visual perceptual attention and speed, reflexes, directionality, visual memory, and visual motor integration and organization.

What happens after the evaluation?

Once we’ve completed the functional vision examination, we will review the results with you to create a tailored treatment program to address your or your child’s personal needs, visual expectations, and lifestyle requirements. If you have any questions, our eye doctor will take the time to listen to your concerns and respond clearly and fully. We work together with each patient to help the eyes and brain to join forces to interpret the world clearly and comfortably.