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Am J Otol. 1994 May;15(3):340-7.

Dynamic visual acuity: a test for oscillopsia and vestibulo-ocular reflex function.

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Jules Stein Eye Institute, Comprehensive Division, UCLA 90024-7002, USA.


A method has been developed of clinically quantifying dynamic visual acuity (DVA), the acuity during imposed head motion in the pitch axis. In this method, visual acuity is measured using a computer-controlled projection system during vertical, sinusoidal relative motion either of the optotypes (the letters to be read) or of a servodriven swinging chair in which subjects are seated. In normal persons, the vestibulo-ocular reflex (VOR) functions adequately during imposed head movements to limit retinal image instability, making DVA independent of head velocity. During head movements the wearing of telescopic spectacles, which magnify the visual effects, can overwhelm even normal visual-vestibular interactions, producing retinal image instability leading to creation of artificial experimental oscillopsia in normal subjects. With the head stationary, optotype motion at frequencies and velocities beyond the capabilities of visual tracking also results in retinal image motion. Using these methods, DVA for both optotype and head motion was found to be degraded in a predictable fashion when the velocity of the image on the retina exceeded 2 degrees per second. In two patients with total peripheral vestibular loss, DVA was markedly impaired during head motion. As a result of the VOR deficit, this impairment of DVA was observed, even without the use of telescopic spectacles, and was predictably related to the velocity of imposed head motion. Dynamic visual acuity during imposed head motion is a quantitative and clinically feasible measure of oscillopsia that reflects functionally significant abnormalities of the VOR.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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