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A Collection of Medical & Legal Information About Brain Injury

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Vision Symptoms and Brain Injury (TBI)

The human visual system is complex and involves numerous muscles, nerves and a huge cross section of various parts of the brain. Blurred vision is a very common symptom of traumatic brain injury (TBI). Other difficulties are less simple. The vision can change in very strange ways after a brain injury. Depending on where the injury is in the brain, a person can see the world as if through a picket fence, can see everything normally with large slices of the field of vision taken out, can have words move on the page, can have any source of light turn into a star burst or other complex figures and other surprises. Many of these difficulties arise from damage to a cranial nerve which in turn controls one of the eye muscles necessary for normal vision. Problems with vision should be addressed by a neuro-ophthalmologist, not an optometrist or ophthalmologist inexperienced with brain injury (TBI).

Convergence Insufficiency

This is a common diagnosis after traumtic brain injury (TBI) and involves the disc equilibrium between the abilities of each eye to function properly. A person with convergence insufficiency (CI) will commonly have to turn or tilt their head in order to get the two eyes to line up properly. This can result in headaches, neck aches and balance problems. It is also extremely tiring to read or be on a computer with this condition since there is a constant effort to keep the eyes in place. There are rehabilitative exercises that your doctor can prescribe for you in order to overcome this difficulty. It is solvable in most cases and can bring relief.

Detached Retina

This can occur during the trauma of traumtic brain injury (TBI). It also can be observed directly after an accident or can come on months later. Signs of a detached retina includes seeing tiny specks or floaters, seeing flashes of light, blurred vision, or gradually reduced peripheral vision. Surgical repair is effective if done in time.

Field of Vision Test

Your eye doctor may have you undergo a field of vision test in which you sit in front of complex and convex series of blinking lights. This will test your ability to see in all normal areas of vision. The test includes effort related tests which can show someone is faking their vision problems, so be careful and do your best on this valuable test. It is not uncommon for victims of TBI to have diminishment of their field of vision, usually it is the peripheral vision.

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