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Ishihara Test for Color Blindness

The commonly used test for color blindness is the Ishihara Test - testing the ability of athletes to distinguish colors.Color Blind Test

equipment required: The full Ishihara Test is a collection of 38 plates filled with colored dots. The dots are colored in different shades and a number is hidden inside with shades of another color.

procedure: Subjects look at each plate of the 38 plates and have to indicate the number or shape illustrated. It is usually not necessary to conduct the full test, as a color vision deficiency is usually apparent after just a few plates.

results: Between 10-20% of males have some degree of color blindness, and only a small percentage of females. Red-Green Color blindness is the most common.

treatment: There is no treatment for color blindness, though colors can be chosen that limit the possibility of confusion for color blind individuals.

comments: This test was developed by the Japanese ophthalmologist Shinobu Ishihara (1879-1963), who developed this test at at the Military Medical School to screen military recruits for abnormalities of color vision.

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