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Eye (Lond). 2007 Mar;21(3):362-6.

Mean deviation fluctuation in eyes with stable Humphrey 24-2 visual fields.

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Directorate of Ophthalmology, Queen's Medical Centre, Nottingham, UK.



To describe the expected fluctuation in the mean deviation (MD) scores on a large, long-term series of stable visual field reports for particular grades of defect in order to give clinicians an aid to the correct diagnosis of glaucomatous progression.


Visual field reports of subjects with five reliable consecutive Humphrey 24-2 visual fields, recorded over a period of at least 3 years, were scored using the Advanced Glaucoma Intervention Study (AGIS) system. The AGIS scores of the first and last visual fields were required to be identical.


A total of 202 eyes from 202 patients were used in the study, with a total of 1010 visual fields being used in the analysis. Visual fields with no defect (AGIS score 0) had a 99% confidence interval (CI) of 0.3 dB, mild defects 0.4 dB, moderate defects 0.8 dB, severe 1 dB, and 1.3 dB for end-stage defects when considering variation of MD scores. Using a one-way ANOVA incorporating all stages showed very little fluctuation throughout the series (P=0.96). The correlation between the CI and grade of field defect showed a good positive correlation (r=0.7, P=0.0003) indicating an increase in CI as field defects worsen.


When considering a series of reliable visual fields in a stable eye, one should expect only very little fluctuation in the MD, indicating that an increase in the MD beyond that of the 99% CI described may suggest progression. The reliability indices of the visual field test should be regarded as a primary consideration when assessing visual fields.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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