Multiple retinal detachment surgery: A functional outcome study. The Houston Vision Assessment Test-Retina (HVAT-Retina)

Sherif M El-Harazi, The University of Texas School of Public Health


Retinal detachment is a common ophthalmologic procedure, and outcome is typically measured by a single factor-improvement in visual acuity. Health related functional outcome testing, which quantifies patient's self-reported perception of impairment, can be integrated with objective clinical findings. Based on the patient's self-assessed lifestyle impairment, the physician and patient together can make an informed decision on the treatment that is most likely to benefit the patient. A functional outcome test (the Houston Vision Assessment Test-Retina; HVAT-Retina) was developed and validated in patients with multiple retinal detachments in the same eye. The HVAT-Retina divides an estimated total impairment into subcomponents: contribution of visual disability (potentially correctable by retinal detachment surgery) and nonvisual physical disabilities (co-morbidities not affected by retinal detachment surgery. Seventy-six patients participated in this prospective multicenter study. Seven patients were excluded from the analysis because they were not certain of their answers. Cronbach's alpha coefficient was 0.91 for presurgery HVAT-Retina and 0.94 post-surgery. The item-to-total correlation ranged from 0.50 to 0.88. Visual impairment score improved by 9 points from pre-surgery (p = 0.0003). Physical impairment score also improved from pre-surgery (p = 0.0002). In conclusion, the results of this study demonstrate that the instrument is reliable and valid in patients presenting with recurrent retinal detachments. The HVAT-Retina is a simple instrument and does not burden the patient or the health professional in terms of time or cost. It may be self-administrated, not requiring an interviewer. Because the HVAT-Retina was designed to demonstrate outcomes perceivable by the patient, it has the potential to guide the decision making process between patient and physician.

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Recommended Citation

El-Harazi, Sherif M, "Multiple retinal detachment surgery: A functional outcome study. The Houston Vision Assessment Test-Retina (HVAT-Retina)" (2001). Texas Medical Center Dissertations (via ProQuest). AAI1406489.