A reading speed test for potential vision measurement


This study examines the validity and reliability of a reading speed test as a measure of potential central vision. Reading speed was calculated in words per minute (wpm) from the time taken to read 30 words of 1.20 logMAR size text. Scores were obtained from subjects with cataract (n=48), macular disease (n=35), peripheral vision loss (n=14) and normal eyes (n=10).

Subjects with macular disease (27.013.2 wpm) read much slower than subjects with cataract (91.913.6 wpm). Little difference was found between subjects with cataract, peripheral vision loss (91.514.7 wpm) and normal eyes (103.815.5 wpm). Repeat testing gave values within 16% of reading speed. These results suggest that a reading speed test using large text could be useful as a potential central vision test in cataract patients.

figure 2

Figure 2: An example of a plot of reading speed against print size for an individual subject. The data were fit with a bilinear curve, so that optimal reading speed and critical print size could be determined for each subject.


Clin Exp Ophthalmol 2002;June

K Pesudovs BScOptom PhD DipAdvClinOptom FVCO FAAO FCLSA
B Patel BSc
D B Elliott BSc PhD MCOptom FAAO



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