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A Journal on Sports Medicine

Official Journal of the Italian Sports Medicine Federation
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Medicina dello Sport 1999 December;52(4):277-86

language: Italian

Vision and sport: new forensic aspects

Gottin M. 1, Giacchino M. 1, Oberto M. 2, Chiey A. 3

1 UONA Medicina dello Sport, SL 7, Chivasso (Torino);
2 UOA Medicina Legale, ASL 7, Chivasso (Torino);
3 Istituto di Medicina dello Sport FMSI-CONI, Torino


Visual system provides at most of the sensorial information needed by athletes during competitive sporting activities. To determine the visual performance of athletes, the authors have studied 2435 consecutive subjects during their annual physical examination at the UONA of Sports Medicine, ASL 7 Piedmont, Northwestern Italy, in the period between 1994-1998. Light visual defects have been detected in 22% of athletes, in 14% the static visual acuity didn’t exceed 8/10 and 12% corrective lenses have been prescripted. Only 1.3% of athletes used to wear contact lenses and 8.5% didn’t know their visual defects. Female showed more visual deficit than male as well as athletes older than 14 years respect to younger groups. Moreover, this study has pointed out that cycling, basketball, baseball, volleyball, track and field and swimming include a larger proportion of athletes with visual defects than in other sports as soccer, tennis, skating and martial arts. These results sustain some new rising aspects in forensic medicine as a proposal to a new up to date law, with more restrictive guidelines in matter of sports opthalmology. It’s also necessary that the medical examiner suggests that the athletes should have safety standards if they use corrective lenses for competitive sport participation.

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