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Acta Otolaryngol. 1996 Sep;116(5):652-6.

Ocular counterrolling in response to asymmetric radial acceleration.

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Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Benjamin Franklin Medical Center, Free University of Berlin, Germany.

Erratum in

  • Acta Otolaryngol (Stockh) 1996 Nov;116(6):919.


The fact that the labyrinths are positioned at approx. 3.5 cm from the head-centric axis leads to the generation of systematic radial acceleratory, or centrifugal, forces during physiological head rotations. Under physiological conditions, the forces exerted on the right and left maculae are generally assumed to be equal and opposite. In the present test, however, the subject was displaced eccentrically during constant angular velocity so that one labyrinth was aligned concentrically with the rotatory axis, whilst the other was exposed to the radial acceleration component generated by the chair rotation. In comparison with previous testing based on subjective setting of the visual vertical, three-dimensional eye movements were recorded in order to obtain an objective measure of the otolith-ocular response mechanisms in the brainstem. The results obtained from normal subjects demonstrate a predominant ocular counterroll (OCR) response to this asymmetric, or unilateral application of linear acceleration. The direction of the OCR response proved to be independent of direction of rotation. The findings demonstrate a symmetrical response magnitude for stimulation of the left and right maculae. In comparison with the OCR response to head-tilt, which can be described as critically damped, the time course of the present response appeared to be underdamped.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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