How useful are grading charts?

28 October 2020
Autumn 2020

Jo Waters asks what are the current grading charts optometrists can use, and how to make the most of them.

Optometrists have been using grading charts to assess contact lens complications routinely now for 20 years – but there are many other grading systems for other eye conditions that are not as widely or consistently used. 

Grading allows a better standard of record-keeping (including for medico-legal purposes), greater accuracy and consistency when referring, acting as a “shorthand for clinical records”, says Michael Bowen, Director of Research at the College, and more precise documentation allows for earlier assessment of disease progression. 

Michael adds: “Because there are so many grading charts, it is key to choose one that has been well validated and preferably well tested in the research literature. It’s also good to have consistency both within practices and the wider community of local ophthalmic services.”

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