Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Treatment for Macular Degeneration in Connecticut: Low Vision Eyeglasses

Doctor Helps Legally Blind to See Better
Dr. Randolph Kinkade, Connecticut’s only full-time low vision optometrist, treats macular degeneration and other vision limiting conditions with telescopic eyeglasses and other devices.  Low vision is defined as impaired vision that cannot be improved with standard eyeglasses, medication or surgery. 

Dr. Kinkade has authored the book Guide to Macular Degeneration Eyeglasses: Low Vision Treatment and is a founding member of the International Academy of Low Vision Specialists.

Low vision affects a person’s ability to read and write, drive an automobile, see people’s faces and watch television. “People with low vision have often been told by their eye doctors that nothing more can be done to help them see better,” states Dr. Kinkade.


 The National Eye Institute estimates that over 2 million people in the United States have low vision. Seniors are more often affected, with macular degeneration being the leading cause.

Other causes include inoperable cataracts, diabetes, glaucoma, retinitis pigmentosa and optic nerve disease.   Genetic defects, strokes and trauma are additional causes of low vision.

Dr. Kinkade feels people start noticing difficulty in doing normal day-to-day activities when their corrected vision becomes less than 20/40.  At this level reading the newspaper starts to be difficult.

On an eye chart, 20/20 vision is considered normal.  An individual has 20/40 vision if the smallest letters they can see on an eye chart are twice the size of the 20/20 letters.  At 20/200 vision, the level of legal blindness, the smallest size letter seen is 10 times larger than that of a 20/20 letter.





With telescopic glasses I can often bring someone with 20/80 vision to see 20/20 on the eye chart.  The vision is a different kind of 20/20 vision they were used to, but it is a huge improvement over what is seen without these special glasses,” states Dr. Kinkade.

Dr. Kinkade reports “these eye glasses consist of miniaturized telescopes incorporating prescriptions, anti-glare coatings, and very special optics.  Understandably, they often take 3-4 weeks to have made.”


The telescopes can be placed in either the lower reading position, straight ahead position or in the upper bioptic position.  With advancement in optics and high-tech lens designs, there is hope for restoring useful vision for people willing to learn new ways of seeing.

 Implantable miniature telescopes are available for certain patients with advanced macular degeneration.  Dr. Kinkade is part of the only rehabilitation team bringing this new technology to Connecticut.



Educational videos, additional information and a free copy of his e-book are available on his website  Dr. Kinkade can be contacted at (800) 756.0766 or

Low Vision Rehabilitation - Connecticut 
Cheshire Danbury Farmington Litchfield Manchester

Norwalk Shelton Stamford Waterford West Haven