Fitzgerald & Associates - Eye Specialist in Cedar Rapids & Iowa City Facebook logo Twitter_Icon_1C-scr

Pinnacle Program

The Pinnacle Program is designed to help adults and children meet their visual, cognitive, academic, and developmental goals. Based on the principles of Mary Bolles’ Sensory Learning Program model, the Pinnacle Program incorporates vision, proprioception, and auditory to help re-train the brain. This sensorimotor integration technique has helped individuals who report the following conditions:


- Autism


- Trauma/PTSD

- Sensory Integration Disorders

- Developmental Delays

- Acquired Brain Injury

- Vision/Concentration

- Behavioral Problems

- Anxiety/Depression

- Balance/Coordination




The Pinnacle Program is a 30-day process and consists of three phases. The first phase includes one-hour sessions in the clinic for 12 consecutive days. The second phase is done at home and includes using the light instrument as directed for 18 days. After the first 30 days, patients will return to the clinic for a follow-up appointment with their doctor or therapist—they will make further recommendations at this time. It is important to note that results are not immediate, but rather gradual. The peak time for results is around three months, but can carry on through 18 months.


What's Vision Got to Do with It?


- 70% of our brain is dedicated to vision and vision processing

- 80% of all sensory processing in the entire body is directly affected by information coming in from the eyes

- 90% of traumatic brain injury patients experience one or more oculomotor dysfunctions

- 40% of traumatic brain injury patients have visual dysfunctions that persist for more than three months


Breaking It Down: The Three Phases of the Pinnacle Program


Phase 1


Patients will come to the clinic for 12 consecutive days for an hour-long session each day. In addition, they may work with a therapist before or after the session on other skills. It is important to be on time and committed to attending all sessions to maximize the benefits and outcome of the program. Please note that this program is not a cure all solution—however, it can provide a starting point towards recovery and/or development.


Phase 2


Patients will take home a light instrument to use for the remaining 18 days of the program. They will watch the light for 20 minutes before going to bed and again in the morning upon waking up.  During this time frame, patients may also return to the clinic 2-3 times per week to work with a therapist, depending on their overall goals.


If a patient does not live in the area, the clinic staff can provide additional activities for home use and/or recommend a therapist closer to home.  The more a person does during this time, the greater the results will be.


Phase 3


After finishing the 30-day program, patients will return for a scheduled checkup with their doctor or therapist. An ongoing plan of care will be established at this visit and additional therapy may be recommended. It is important to note that the program does not stop here; patients will continue to benefit from the effects of the program up to 18 months after completion.


Training the Brain: The Three Components




The Pinnacle Program uses a light instrument that projects a variety of colors, each with its own purpose and effect. Just as sunlight can affect our mood, these different wavelengths of color help to balance the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems of the body.




The vestibular motion of the chair helps to support balance. It gently rotates in a figure eight and is built to mimic the natural rhythm of the human body. The process also helps to realign crystals in the inner ear that may have been affected.




Patients will engage with a variety of music through headphones during each session—the selection will vary by day. The volume will vary throughout the program, with emphasis on the right ear. Studies have shown right ear dominance is better for auditory and language processing in the long term.


Real Life Examples


“The program expanded my peripheral vision...I was more confident driving and more like my younger self.”


- Female, 65 years old



“My son no longer has issues with his socks. He used to have meltdowns if the lines weren’t straight across the top, but now he could have them on backwards and not even care.”


- Parent of 6 year old boy



“I began therapy because my ADD was getting the best of me while I was in class. Now I can easily pay attention in class and understand what the professor is talking about.”


- Male, 21 years old



“My daughter had severe anxiety about new situations—she needed to have lots of information in advance and be aware of the schedule of events. Now she is able to go to dance class by herself with confidence. She also remains calm if plans change at the last minute.”


- Parent of 6 year old girl



“[My son’s] speech started to improve in clarity and sentence formation within the first few days of the program. That continues to get better daily.”


- Parent of 8 year old boy



“My sensory-related migraines have pretty much disappeared. I feel much more comfortable in bright sunlight and noise seems less harsh.”


- Female, 36 years old



“Prior to completing the program, we never knew what would make our daughter upset...we were constantly worried something might set her off. One instance that shocked me was when we were at a restaurant and the waitress brought her the wrong drink. Rather than get upset, as she normally would, she simply said ‘It’s no big deal!’”


- Parent of 9 year old girl


For more information call 319-364-2311




3235 Williams Parkway SW, Suite 1, Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52404   -   319-364-2311