Online Program

Motion Sickness Symptomology and Occurrence Among Visually-Impaired Adults

Monday, November 2, 2015

Janis Ecklund Winters, OD, Illinois College of Optometry, Chicago, IL

Motion sickness (MS) can be caused by riding/reading on a form of transportation or be visually induced.  MS can cause a variety of symptoms and affect health related quality of life. Assessment of MS may be difficult in VI adults due to travel/reading patterns, visual acuity and variable symptomology.  VI adults were surveyed to assess MS occurrence/symptomology.


VI patients attending an urban Vision Rehabilitation clinic were surveyed.  MS symptomology was assessed using the ‘Motion Sickness Assessment Questionnaire’.  Dimensions assessed included gastrointestinal, central, peripheral, and sopite-related.


MS was reported in 24.6% (N=73).  Of those, 75% reported MS riding in car.   About one-third (31.4%) reported MS when reading in a car however over half (58.6%) reported not reading in the car due to visual reasons.  Similarly, 26.5% reported MS when reading while taking public transportation and 60.9% reported not reading due to visual reasons.  Over half reported they did not fly or sail (65% and 52.8%).  The large majority (72%) reported not experiencing MS when watching movies.  MS gastrointestinal symptoms were rated the most severe (61.2%) followed by central (46%), sopite (42.6%) and peripheral (40.2%).  


There were a large number who reported MS. Many did not take forms of transportation or read on the car/bus/train. Most did not experience MS watching a movie.  VI may play a role in these findings.  Professionals/public familiarization with these findings as with MS symptoms is important so that MS can be diagnosed/treated and effect on health related quality of life limited.

Learning Areas:

Basic medical science applied in public health
Provision of health care to the public
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Describe the occurrence and symptoms of motion sickness. Discuss how visual impairment may influence report of occurrence of motion sickness. Assess how visual impairment can affect health related quality of life assessment.

Keyword(s): Primary Care, Health Promotion and Education

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am an optometrist who is active in clinical care of visually impaired patients in a vision rehabilitation clinic.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

Back to: 3112.0: Poster Session