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Alexandra Willis, Stephen J. Anderson; Effects of Glaucoma and Aging on Photopic and Scotopic Motion Perception. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2000;41(1):325-335. doi: https://doi.org/.
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purpose. To examine the effects of primary open-angle glaucoma and normal aging
on visual sensitivity for targets known to bias responses from the
magnocellular visual processing stream.
methods. Contrast sensitivity was measured for the detection and direction
discrimination of low-spatial-frequency (0.5 cyc/deg), drifting (4–24
Hz) sinusoidal gratings in 15 patients with glaucoma (mean age, 58.7
years), 14 age-matched control subjects (mean age 55.8 years), and 10
young control subjects (mean age, 24.4 years). As a control,
sensitivity was measured for the detection of stationary stimuli.
Stimuli of 4.7° square were presented at either 0° eccentricity or
at 20° along the nasal horizontal meridian, under both photopic and
scotopic levels of lighting.
results. Across a wide range of conditions, the ability to detect and
discriminate visual motion declined significantly (P <
0.05) with increasing age, whereas the ability to detect stationary
patterns was generally unaffected. The rate of decline was adequately
described by a simple linear function. Control studies showed that the
age-related motion sensitivity losses could not be attributed solely to
decreases in retinal illuminance associated with increasing age. Of
note, however, there were no significant differences in mean
sensitivity between glaucoma and age-matched control groups for any of
the conditions used.
conclusions. Even under conditions believed to bias the response of the visual
system to the magnocellular pathway, glaucoma subjects could not be
reliably differentiated from control subjects on the basis of mean
sensitivity to motion stimuli. The findings have two broad
implications: first, that substantial neural loss specific for motion
perception occurs during the processes of normal aging, and second,
that sensitivity to motion targets per se may not be a useful indicator
of neural integrity in the early stages of
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