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The Bioptic Telescope

The Bioptic Telescope is a lens system with a telescope attached to a pair of glasses, above one's normal line of sight. This allows a trained user the opportunity to detect objects or movement within his/her driving scene using the wide field of view available through the regular spectacle lens and to resolve fine details such as road signs and traffic lights by glancing briefly and intermittently into and out of the miniature telescopic unit. Here is a video showing what is meant by visual fields for bioptic driving.


A bioptic system is prescribed by an eye specialist, and is available in a number of different styles, sizes and strengths. Drivers who use bioptic lens systems look through the main carrier lenses for general driving purposes 90-95% of the total driving time. To use the bioptic telescope, the driver briefly tilts their head to peer through the telescope, and does so intermittently throughout the journey.


The Bioptic Telescope System (BTS) allows you to rapidly locate moving objects while your still or moving, rapidly locate stationary objects while still, and develop accurate visual perception skills to evaluate the environment.

The 'Carrier' Lens
Image of female lookig through carrier lens of bioptic
The 'Telescopic' Lens
Image of female looking through scope of bioptic

Using the Bioptic Telescope

  • Bioptics are used as a spotting device, intermittently during driving, never constantly.

  • An individual uses the 'carrier' lends 95% of the time when driving.

  • The amount one spots through the Bioptic varies depending on the type of driving.

  • Maximizing eye movement instead of head movement will decrease response time.

Some of the critical skills required for bioptic driving include distance viewing skills, object awareness skills, and basic bioptic usage skills. Once trained in its appropriate use, a low vision driver using a bioptic lens system is able to detect and identify detail, color, and movement of critical objects or forms at a more ‘normal’ viewing distance while driving.


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