For amblyopia patients, random dot stimuli (RDS) through video game play may improve stereopsis, a team of Spanish researchers report.1 The findings echo a similar recent report from UC Berkeley School of Optometry.

Since less than 30% of amblyopia patients improve their steroacuity through standard occlusion or penalization of the stronger, fellow eye, researchers investigated whether perceptual learning in a game format would be an effective treatment.1

Thirty-two stereo-deficient patients between the ages of seven and 14 who were previously treated for amblyopia participated in this prospective, randomized double-blind study. Participants followed a perceptual learning program at home using RDS software. In the experimental group, the demand of stereopsis was increased until it reached the lowest detectable disparity. In the comparison group, the stimulation interval was a constant (840” to 750”). Stereoacuity was evaluated with the Randot Preschool Stereoacuity Test (RPST) and the Wirt Circles.

Researchers found stereoacuity outcomes were significantly different between groups. Median stereoacuity improvement with RPST was 50% for the experimental group, but and 0% for the comparison groups. Wirt Circles improvement was similar, 46.42% and 0%, respectively, for experimental and comparison groups. However, stereoacuity improvement was not different between groups when success was considered a 70% gain in RPST. Researchers found a statistical difference when success was considered a gain of two levels on Wirt Circles and stereoacuity 140" or less. Stereoacuity remained stable after six months when measured with RPST, but it worsened in two subjects when measured with Wirt Circles.

“Direct stimulation of stereopsis at home using RDS in a game environment improves the stereoacuity in stereo-deficient subjects with a history of amblyopia,” researchers said.

1. Portela-Camino JA, Martin- González S, Ruiz-Alcocer J, et al. A random dot computer video game improves stereopsis. Optom Vis Sci. 2018 Jun;95(6):523-35.