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Article
April 1995

Grating Visual Acuity With Teller Cards Compared With Snellen Visual Acuity in Literate Patients

Author Affiliations

From the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinic (Dr Kushner) and Davis-Duehr Eye Associates (Dr Lucchese and Ms Morton), Madison. The authors have no proprietary interest in the Teller Acuity Cards or in VisTech Inc.

Arch Ophthalmol. 1995;113(4):485-493. doi:10.1001/archopht.1995.01100040107035
Abstract

Objective:  To determine the usefulness of Teller Acuity Cards for detecting three levels of vision deficit, the cutoff for amblyopia (20/40 or poorer), vision impairment (20/70), or legal blindness (20/200).

Design:  We compared grating visual acuity with the Teller cards with Snellen visual acuity (our gold standard) in 69 literate patients with amblyopia or other cause of vision loss in a prospective masked study.

Results:  Teller card visual acuity and distance Snellen visual acuity correlated significantly (r=.508, P<.001); however, Teller card visual acuity explained only 26% of the variation in distance Snellen visual acuity. Teller card visual acuity had a low sensitivity for detecting vision deficit of 20/40 or poorer (58%), vision deficit of 20/70 or poorer (39%), or legal blindness (24%), but somewhat more accurately reflected near Snellen visual acuity than distance visual Snellen acuity. Teller cards had a higher positive predictive value—80% for 20/70 visual acuity and 43% for legal blindness, as determined by near Snellen visual acuity. Specificity of Teller cards was 88% for detecting visual acuity loss of 20/70 and 98% for legal blindness. Negative predictive value of Teller cards for detecting visual acuity loss of 20/70 was 50% and for legal blindness was 71%.

Conclusions:  Teller Acuity Cards may underestimate the presence of amblyopia of all types, legal blindness, and a specified level of vision impairment (20/70). Even in the presence of normal visual acuity measurements with Teller cards, significant visual loss as assessed by standard Snellen optotypes may be anticipated in many patients.

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