Date of Award
Master of Occupational Therapy (MOT)
Brain Injuries; Vision Disorders -- therapy
"Very few in the health care professions, including head trauma rehabilitation centers, are adequately aware of visual problems resulting from Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)/ Acquired Brain Injury (ABI) and the visual-perception consequences. These visual deficits may lead to impaired functioning in the person's daily activities and roles because vision affects all other functions" (braininjuries.org, ~ 1). A few examples of activities of daily living (ADL's) and instrumental activities of daily living (lADL's) that may be impacted by visual deficits include but are not limited to: driving, eating, dressing, leisure participation (movies, reading, sports), and employment. "Unfortunately, this creates a gap in rehabilitative services, resulting in incomplete treatment and frustration for the patient, family and treatment team" (braininjuries.org, ~ 1).
Occupational Therapy's basic premise is to increase the independence of an individual in their daily activities and roles. An occupational therapist's (OT's) training in the assessment, design and provision of effective interventions can be instrumental in the rehabilitation process of vision deficits and their impact on daily living. OT's are trained in the evaluation and treatment design specific to individuals diagnosed with TBII ABI including; cognitive, visual perceptual, physical, and psychological in relation to activities of daily living. Occupational Therapy can be an important member of the multidisciplinary team who is serving this population. Unfortunately, often both occupational therapists and members of a multi-disciplinary team are not always clear on the role and protocol of OT' s in the provision of treatment intervention specific to TBII ABI and visual deficits.
A concentrated literature review was conducted to identify current standard best practices and protocols and the potential role of OT identified. TBII ABI visual perceptual deficits were identified and compared to OT training to ensure OT's are qualified to meet the unique needs of this population. The other roles of multi-disciplinary team members were explored to see the possible areas OT could address or where an OT's specialized training could strengthen the rehabilitative treatment intervention. The findings from this review demonstrate that occupational therapists have the proficiency and competence to evaluate and depict the functional disability or ability of the acquired or traumatic brain injured client as a whole.
The outcome of the project is a promotional packet, The Role of Occupational Therapy in Vision Therapy, which includes an:
1. Educational brochure, Through the Eyes of Traumatic Brain Injury / Acquired Brain Injury: The Role of Occupational Therapy in Vision Therapy as well as, 2. A more in depth educational packet entitled, Through the Eyes of Traumatic Brain Injury/Acquired Brain Injury: An Informational Resource on the Role of OT
This promotional packet is intended as a means for occupational therapists to use in educating others further on the use of the role of occupational therapy in the provision of vision therapy with the acquired and traumatic brain injured populace.
Cooper, Sarah A. and Schilling, Whitney, "Vision therapy promotional packet: through the eyes of traumatic brain injury/acquired brain injury : an informational resource on the role of OT" (2009). Occupational Therapy Capstones. 193.