Published: Friday 26 June 2015
It's estimated that about 60% of all stroke survivors are left with visual problems after their stroke. These can be poorly described by patients, particularly where they have communication and cognitive problems are their stroke too.
Published in this month's Journal of Stroke and Cerebrovascular Diseases, a new study suggests that there are significant inequalities in the provision of vision care to stroke survivors in the UK, and and that further work is required to ensure equality and effective care.
The research was led by Dr Fiona Rowe, Reader in Health Services Research at the University of Liverpool, and funded by the Stroke Association and Thomas Pocklington Trust.
The study set out to explore the care provision for visual problems after stroke and variations in this in the United Kingdom. Survey questions were developed and piloted with clinicians, academics, and users of services and disseminated to a range of professional members from ophthalmic (vision health) and stroke teams.
Among the many findings, it was found that the typical overall follow-up period of vision care for patients after stroke was less than 3 months. Less than half of those professionals who responded to the survey used designated care pathways for stroke survivors with visual problems, and about a third of professionals who responded did not provide visual information leaflets to their patients.
This research is therefore a crucial building block in helping to change vision care practice for stroke survivors, and ensure as many people are able to make the best recovery of their vision possible.