The results of our survey indicatethat while many people with PSP are aware of prism glasses, there is scope to improve patient knowledge of this rehabilitation aid. Furthermore, while some people find them useful for reading, eating, and using electronic devices, most people with PSP do not appear to benefit from prisms or they find them hard to use. Even those who do find them beneficial do not reliably persist with their use. It is likely that better fitting and more systematic training and practice would improve the usefulness of the prisms and reduce the negative impact of side-effects such disorientation. Indeed, there is evidence from stroke survivors with inattention that training improves adherence and outcomes of prism glasses therapy. However, no such training exists for people with PSP.
It is important to be cautious when drawing conclusions from a relatively small sample, but the findings seem to suggest that current approaches to prism therapy for PSP are, unfortunately, relatively ineffective. We believe this is likely due to a lack of reliable training advice for patients, which results from a dearth of scientific evidence about the optimal way to train people in the fitting and use of prisms for different tasks. The only way to resolve this issue is to conduct more evidence-based research that can establish the optimal way to use prism glasses for the rehabilitation of PSP. We are currently looking for ways to fund more research in the important area and would be interested in hearing from people who are considering studying for a PhD on this topic.
You can learn more about our other research into attention and memory in PSP here