FORT LAUDERDALE-DAVIE, Fla. –The National Eye Institute of the National Institutes of Health has awarded up to $556,532 to investigators at Nova Southeastern University’s (NSU) College of Optometry to study the relationship between the vision condition, convergence insufficiency, and reading performance and attention.
The grant will fund the Convergence Insufficiency Treatment Trial—Attention and Reading Trial (CITT-ART), a national multi-center clinical trial that involves optometry, ophthalmology, psychiatry and education in determining how this eye-teaming problem impacts a child’s attention and reading performance. Convergence insufficiency is a common vision disorder in which the eyes turn slightly outward when a person is reading or doing work close to his or her eyes.
“Children who have convergence insufficiency sometimes suffer from poor reading performance and attention problems,” said Rachel A. “Stacey” Coulter, O.D., M.S.Ed., principal investigator for NSU College of Optometry’s research team. “As the first large-scale randomized clinical trial to study this problem, outcomes of this study could lead to new therapies for some children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and reading problems. We are very excited that the National Eye Institute has funded our grant application, and we look forward to enrolling children into the study this fall.”
The NSU College of Optometry faculty research team consists of Rachel A. “Stacey” Coulter, O.D., M.S.Ed. (Principal Investigator); Annette Bade, O.D., M.S.; Pamela Oliver, O.D., M.S.; Gregory Fecho, O.D.; Erin Jenewein, O.D., M.S.; Deborah Amster, O.D.; Yin C. Tea, O.D.; Jacqueline Rodena, O.D.; and Nicole Patterson, O.D., M.S.Ed.
NSU is one of seven clinical sites participating across the United States. Other sites include Akron Children’s Hospital in Ohio; Bascom Palmer Eye Institute in Miami; Marshall B. Ketchum University in Fullerton, Calif.; Ohio State University, Salus University in Elkins Park, Pa.; The State University of New York; and The University of Alabama at Birmingham.