American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus

View all recommendations from this society

Released October 8, 2013

Don’t recommend vision therapy for patients with dyslexia.

Dyslexia is a language-based learning disorder in which a person has trouble understanding written words. This occurs because the brain has a problem distinguishing and separating the sounds in spoken words, called a phonological deficit. Dyslexia is not due to a vision disorder. Children with dyslexia do not have any more visual problems than children without dyslexia. Vision therapy does not work for this population because the eyes are not the problem.

These items are provided solely for informational purposes and are not intended as a substitute for consultation with a medical professional. Patients with any specific questions about the items on this list or their individual situation should consult their physician.

How The List Was Created

The President and the Executive Vice President of the American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus met with its Board of Directors. These 10 pediatric ophthalmologists leading the American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus then generated a list of 10 potential topics. Each individual ranked the topics and the top five recommendations were chosen. Each recommendation was sent to a recognized expert in that specific area or to a committee of experts to complete the template. The American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus disclosure and conflict of interest policies can be found at


Shaywitz SE. Overcoming dyslexia: a new and complete science-based program for overcoming reading problems at any level. New York, NY: Knopf; 2003.

Jennings AJ. Behavioural optometry—a critical review. Optom Pract. 2000;1:67–78.

Barrett B. A critical evaluation of the evidence supporting the practice of behavioural vision therapy. Ophthalmic Physiol Opt. 2009;29:4–25.

Fletcher JM, Currie D. Vision efficiency interventions and reading disability. Perspectives on Language and Literacy 2011;37:21–4.

Handler SM, Fierson WM; Section on Ophthalmology and Council on Children with Disabilities, American Academy of Ophthalmology, American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus, American Association of Certified Orthoptists. Joint technical report—learning disabilities, dyslexia, and vision. Pediatrics. 2011;127:e818-56. Available at: