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PLoS One. 2017 Feb 13;12(2):e0171332. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0171332. eCollection 2017.

Roll vection in migraine and controls using inertial nulling and certainty estimate techniques.

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School of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Rochester, 601 Elmwood Avenue, Rochester, NY, United States of America.
Department of Otolaryngology, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY, United States of America.
Department of Bioengineering, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY, United States of America.
Department of Neuroscience, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY, United States of America.


Vection is an illusory perception of self-motion that occurs when a visual motion is presented in the majority of the visual field. We used certainty estimate (CE) and inertial nulling (IN) techniques to study the effect of visual stimuli on roll perception in 10 migraine and 9 control subjects. A visual roll stimulus was presented for 1 to 8s. For the IN method, an inertial stimulus was delivered during the final 1s of the visual stimulus during which subjects judged the direction of perceived motion. The inertial motion was varied to find the point of subjective equality (PSE) at which both responses were equally likely to be reported. For the CE trials, the same durations of visual motion were used but without inertial motion and subjects rated their certainty of motion on a scale of 0-100. The overall difference in PSE between 1s and 8s subjects is significant (p = 0.03). Migraineurs had a ten fold larger effect in IN studies in the 8s than 1s (p = 0.01), but controls did not have a significant difference (p = 0.72). Unlike the control population, in migraineurs the perception of roll increased significantly with the duration of the visual stimulus. There was a large variation between subjects with both the CE and IN measures. The CE measure was poorly correlated with IN measures but demonstrated a similar trend with larger variation between subjects.

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