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Surv Ophthalmol. 1981 Jan-Feb;25(4):237-52.

Oscillatory potentials. History, techniques and potential use in the evaluation of disturbances of retinal circulation.


The oscillatory potentials seem to reflect severe disturbances in the retinal (and perhaps choroidal) circulation. In some cases of diabetic retinopathy with severe microangiopathy, the oscillatory potentials may be selectively reduced or extinguished while the amplitude of the a- and b-waves of the ERG remains normal. A correlation appears to exist between severely reduced oscillatory potentials and a circulatory deficiency in the retina. This selective reduction of the oscillatory potentials during advancing retinopathy is considered to be indirect evidence that they are generated independently from the mechanism producing the primary components (the a- and b-waves). The usefulness of the oscillatory potentials in the prognosis of retinal disease, particularly in diabetic retinopathy, is reviewed. The historical background, the techniques and instrumentation necessary to produce and record them, the experimental data available on the site of their origin, the clinical significance to date and the experimental efforts in our laboratory are summarized.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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