Separating the Visuospatial from the Visuomotor Coordination Skill Estimation in Learning Disabled Children: the Eta-Mu Model.

Posted in Neuro-Ophthalmology


Carlo Aleci, Marzia Piccoli, Valentina Melotti, Elena Melis, Lorenzo Canavese

 Cureus. 2017 Dec; 9(12): e1901,  doi:  10.7759/cureus.1901


Abstract A model aimed at detecting the proportion of visuoperceptive/ visuomotor coordination impairment in children with ascertained or suspected specific learning disability is described. The final purpose is to provide customized rehabilitation programs.

Methods In this pilot study four children (age 8-9) were administered a set of standardized tests for evaluating their ability to perform visuoperceptive/visuomotor tasks. Depending on the individual outcome, two indexes have been computed from the resulting z-scores: η (Eta) that quantifies the visuoperceptive impairment, and μ (Mu) that expresses the alteration in visuomotor coordination.

Results A condition of abnormality was evident in each patient: subjects 1 and 3 suffered mainly from a visuoperceptive alteration (η higher than expected) while subject 4 had reduced visuomotor coordination (μ higher than expected). Subject 2 showed balanced visuoperceptive and visuomotor  impairment.  Based on the obtained η and μ values, each child underwent a customized rehabilitation treatment, then he was examined again. At re-test, η or μ turned balanced and z-scores improved in the 4 patients.

Conclusions The Eta/Mu model is effective in detecting the type of damage by quantifying the share of VP/VMC involvement in dyslexic children, allowing a customized rehabilitative approach. Such approach, focused on treating the function found to be defective, looks effective in rebalancing the individual visuomotor / visuoperceptive skills: it should therefore taken into consideration when updating the rehabilitation plans of learning disabled children.


Keywords: learning disability, visuoperceptive, motor coordination, rehabilitation, customization



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