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Ulster Offers New Telescopic Spectacles

23 March 2010

The University of Ulster’s Optometry Clinic is the first in Northern Ireland to offer a new type of telescopic spectacles that can dramatically improve the vision of people with eyesight problems. 

The BiOptic Telescope, which is made by American company, Ocutech, has “dramatically” improved the day-to-day life of local users. 

The device has a telescope mounted on top of the spectacle frame. The user views normally through the spectacles for general use, but lowers their chin slightly to look through the telescope to see an object in finer detail. 

Optometrists, Julie McDowell and Moyra McClure, who are based at the clinic on the Coleraine campus, have been specially trained to demonstrate and prescribe the glasses.  

Ms McClure said: “The BiOptic telescope is ideally suited to people who have low vision also know as central vision loss which most commonly comes from a macular disorder, diabetic retinopathy, albinism or nystagmus.  

“The magnifying device can help with a range of distance tasks such as seeing direction signs, watching television, seeing sports events, sightseeing, theatre, seeing indicator boards in airports, reading bus numbers and recognising faces across a street.  

“The telescope can also be used for intermediate and near tasks such as computer, music and playing cards.” 

Ms McDowell added: “Several of the clinic’s patients are now regular users and they say the difference to their everyday lives has been dramatic. Some of our patients use their BiOptic telescope up to six hours in the day.” 

Anyone interested in finding out more information about the BiOptic Telescope can contact the Optometry Clinic on 028 70323047.