Traumatic Brain Injury & Vision

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is any damage or alteration to brain function due to external physical force and most often an acute event. Since our brain defines who we are, the consequences of a brain injury can affect all aspects of life, including vision. Vision problems can result from falls, car accidents, concussions or strokes.

Vision problems range from subtle to severe and are caused by interruption to the neurological system that controls the extraocular muscles for eye movements and focus. Double vision and words moving on the page are more obvious vision problems. The more subtle symptoms range from headaches, dizziness, nausea, motion sickness or difficulty with balance or movement.

Treatment is typically multidisciplinary. Depending on the nature of the symptoms, optometrists, physicians, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, psychologists, speech pathologists, chiropractors or other specialists may work together to help with overall recovery. A thorough evaluation of vision is required to determine the vision problems relating to TBI or stroke. Treatment may include prism lenses and, in some cases, vision therapy.

Symptoms of Post Trauma Vision Syndrome

  • Blurred near vision
  • Double vision
  • Headaches
  • Pain in the eye or eyes
  • Losing place when reading
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Poor reading comprehension
  • Inability to maintain visual or eye contact

Most vision problems relating to head injury can be effectively treated.

The impact of Concussion on Vision