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Paul H. Artes, Balwantray C. Chauhan; Signal/Noise Analysis to Compare Tests for Measuring Visual Field Loss and Its Progression. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2009;50(10):4700-4708. doi: 10.1167/iovs.09-3601.
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purpose. To describe a methodology for establishing signal-to-noise ratios (SNRs) for different perimetric techniques, and to compare SNRs of frequency-doubling technology (FDT2) perimetry and standard automated perimetry (SAP).
methods. Fifteen patients with open-angle glaucoma (median MD, −2.6 dB, range +0.2 to −16.1 dB) were tested six times with FDT2 and SAP (SITA Standard program 24-2) within a 4-week period. Signals were estimated from the average superior–inferior difference between the mean deviation (MD) values in five mirror-pair sectors of the Glaucoma Hemifield Test, and noise from the dispersion of these differences over the six repeated tests. SNRs of FDT2 and SAP were compared by mixed-effects modeling.
results. There was moderate correlation between the signals of FDT2 and SAP (r 2 = 0.68, P < 0.001), but no correlation of noise (r 2 = 0.01, P = 0.16). Although both signal as well as noise estimates were higher with FDT2 compared with SAP, 60% to 70% of sector pairs showed higher SNRs with FDT2. The SNRs of FDT2 were between 20% and 40% higher than those of SAP (P = 0.01). There were no meaningful differences between parametric and nonparametric estimates of signal, noise, or SNR.
conclusion. The higher SNRs of FDT2 suggest that this technique is at least as efficient as SAP at detecting localized visual field losses. Signal/noise analyses may provide a useful approach for comparing visual field tests independent of their decibel scales and may provide an initial indication of sensitivity to visual field change over time.
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