U. Kampf, F. Muchamedjarow
Tele-medical vision training with computer games including background stimulation as a complementary method in amblyopia therapy: project of an internationally supported multi-center trial
We invite interested partners to take part in a multi-center trial project. The proposed trial is aimed to gain further evidence with respect to the question whether visual background stimulation of the lazy eye by a contrast-modulated sinusoidal drifting grating, combined with a computer-gaming activity, might be of value as a complementary tele-medical treatment in support of the standard occlusion therapy of amblyopia [2–3].
For this purpose, the therapy effects of visual training with a computer game including the background stimulus, as our treatment condition, will be compared to a placebo condition of the same gaming activity without background stimulation.
Thus, the patients of both groups are to daily perform training sessions of a gaming activity provided via internet which serves for attention binding. In the treatment group, background stimulation by a sinusoidal contrast-modulated drifting grating is superimposed to the game as our therapeutic intervention. At the same time, the patients of the control group are exposed to an identical training setting, with the exception that there will be no background stimulation superimposed. Instead of the drifting grating, an unstructured uniform background will be used as a placebo condition. Additionally to the computer training, the patients of both trial groups will be fully occluded lege artis. This is of major importance, since without sufficient occlusion (i. e. under conditions of so-called minimal occlusion) there might be expected no significantly different therapy effects of computer gaming irrespective of with or without background stimulation, as has been shown by a recent study of the Dresden University Eye Clinics .
According to these results — as a preliminary conclusion which has to be verified by the proposed trial — our tele–medical pleoptic stimulation by the drifting grating, combined with a computer-gaming activity for attention binding, might be able to support amblyopia treatment only in conditions of sufficient occlusion. Accordingly, the fully occluded patients of the both intervention groups will have to carry out the tele-medical pleoptic computer training provided via internet during 3 months at home. At the beginning, during, and at the end of the 3 months the patients will be regularly examined for evaluative purposes by our international group of medical collaborators who are invited herewith to take part in the planned multi-center trial. Finally, the pre-post differences in visual acuity between the both trial groups will be compared.
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