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Why use holograms to check vision?

Using holograms to measure refractive error could help many people to see and function better.

We have all heard of Vision 2020: The Right to Sight which is a global initiative of the World Health Organisation and the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness. Refractive error is still the most common cause of reversible blindness, 670 million people are visually impaired because they cannot get access to an eye test or because they cannot afford a pair of glasses. The majority (85%) of these cases are in remote developing areas.

The current method of performing refraction to determine the need for glasses has remained unchanged for nearly a century. Although the technique of using the phoropter and letter chart to determine the refractive error has proven to be sturdy and accurate, it is nonetheless expensive and requires trained optometrist to perform. Clearly, this is not possible in developing countries where neither training nor equipment exists.

Holograms is a good alternative because it is simple to use, requires minimal training, is accurate as getting your eyes tested in an optometrist’s clinic, and is more repeatable when perform between different practitioners than refraction with the phoropter.
Holograms to measure the need for glasses is just as fast as using an autorefractor, but holograms do not trigger accommodation, especially in young patients. Furthermore, they can be powered by a small battery, is highly portable and the technology is cheaper to manufacturer than autorefractors.

Holographic refraction can really make a difference, but we have to wait and see how researchers will develop this concept into usable technology for the future.

hologram setup

Click here to find out how it works.