Low Vision- Common Terms and definitions

  Visual Impairment: A state in which an individual’s eye sight is limited to the point that they have difficulty performing ordinary tasks, even while wearing prescribed corrective lenses. This can include all levels of visual functionality, from low vision to full blindness. Low Vision: Uncorrectable vision loss that interferes with daily activities and can’t be corrected with regular glasses, contact lenses, medicine or surgery. Visual Acuity: Describes the sharpness of a person’s vision and their ability to see details. Visual acuity is primarily measured using the Snellen eye chart. Loss of visual acuity can lead to the detection of many disorders. Legal blindness: A legal definition used to determine eligibility for vocational training, rehabilitation, schooling, disability benefits, low vision devices and tax exemption programs.
  • In the USA legal blindness is defined as having 20/200 or less of central visual acuity.
  • What a fully-sighted person can see at 200 feet away a legally blind person will see at 20 feet, even while wearing glasses or contact lenses.
  Total blindness: The complete lack of sigh, including the inability to perceive light, a condition that is clinically referred to as NLP or “no light perception.”      
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