International Blind Sport Federation (IBSA) executive director Henk van Aller has suggested changes could be made to its classification system as part of a review of all of its Paralympic sports following criticism from a group of British goalball players.
Van Aller told insidethegames the review could lead to alterations such as "making the boundaries for visual acuity and/or visual field tighter or indeed making them wider than they currently are".
While the review has not been launched in response to British goalball players describing the current classification system as "discriminatory" - it forms part of a process to ensure sports are compliant with International Paralympic Committee (IPC) rules - it could nevertheless yield the changes they have called for.
"The project for goalball is just beginning and is being undertaken by independent researchers who will involve athletes, coaches, classifiers and experts from all over the world in many months of interviews as well as testing and data evaluation both in and out of competition," Van Aller said.
"IBSA will be providing more details very shortly.
"The evidence and outcomes from the research could mean that changes are made to the current system, either by making the boundaries for visual acuity and/or visual field tighter or indeed making them wider than they currently are."
The IBSA's current rules prevent those athletes in the B4 category from competing at international competitions.
The B4 classification is recognised by British Blind Sport but not the IBSA, leaving a number of visually impaired athletes who fall into the category unable to participate at events.
A petition backed by the likes of British goalball player Adam Knott, who represented the host nation at the 2012 Paralympic Games in London, claims the current system "discriminates against B4 classified athletes" and calls on the IBSA and the IPC to reconsider their eligibility.
"IBSA is really clear that if any current or future athletes are found non-eligible using the current - or any new - international system, it does not mean they do not have a disability which affects their everyday life," Van Aller added.
"The classification system only judges their abilities on the field of play.
"IBSA believes that everyone with a vision impairment should be able to participate in sports.
"As the global governing body for goalball we are responsible for fairness at the high performance level and the same classification rules and processes are applied to everyone.
"Nationally, federations are free to implement their own systems.
"Anecdotally, we know that a lot of countries allow athletes that might not be eligible for international sport to compete at a national level.
"This is often to grow their teams and generate attention to be able to attract more people with visual impairments to goalball.
"These athletes therefore play a crucial role in the growth of the sport.
"We are very conscious of the sensitivities and discussions around classification across Paralympic sport.
"We intend to create a high quality system for goalball, based on world-leading research, that everyone can have the highest levels of confidence in."