AmblyoPlay is bringing its home-based vision therapy solution for children and adults with amblyopia (lazy eye), mild strabismus (crossed or turned eye) or convergence insufficiency (eyes unable to focus together) to the U.S. where 100,000 children are born with conditions that require such therapy each year.
Colloquially known as lazy eye, amblyopia is a vision development disorder in which the vision of one eye is less developed than the other. Because the brain has a difficult time merging two images when one is of weaker quality, it starts to favor the stronger eye over the weaker one.
Traditional vision therapy exercises used to treat amblyopia are repetitive and time-consuming, which often leads to abandonment of the therapy for a high proportion of patients — especially young children. With AmblyoPlay, users perform vision therapy through red and blue glasses and interactive gaming software and are rewarded with tokens they can exchange for physical awards that are sent to their home. The program — available via Windows and Mac computers, Android tablets and iPads — stimulates the eye muscles through two 15-minute sessions per day.
“We realized quickly that for our target age group — children aged four to 14 — making the therapy engaging and rewarding was the first step in supporting parents and doctors as they treat amblyopia,” Žan Menart, CEO of AmblyoPlay, said in a statement. “Lazy eye can lead to depth perception and vision problems that have long-lasting effects, like reading and learning difficulties, social trauma, disadvantages playing sports, difficulty obtaining a driver’s license and more.”
Users have three subscription options for accessing AmblyoPlay — three months, six months or a year. The different durations address the unique needs of the user, which can be affected by the user’s age, the severity of their vision problem and how regularly they complete the vision therapy exercises. Parents can monitor the progress of their child through AmblyoPlay’s automated progression tracker and share the results with their child’s doctor at subsequent eye examinations.
Price-wise, the service starts at $110 for a three-month subscription and is available for purchase on AmblyoPlay’s website. In contrast, vision therapy performed at private practices or vision therapy clinics can cost as much as $900 for an initial consultation and $170 per weekly appointment.