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Luminita Tarita-Nistor, Michael H. Brent, Martin J. Steinbach, Esther G. González; Fixation Stability during Binocular Viewing in Patients with Age-Related Macular Degeneration. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2011;52(3):1887-1893. doi: 10.1167/iovs.10-6059.
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The authors examined the fixation stability of patients with age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and large interocular acuity differences, testing them in monocular and binocular viewing conditions. The relationship between fixation stability and visual performance during monocular and binocular viewing was also studied.
Twenty patients with AMD participated. Their monocular and binocular distance acuities were measured with the ETDRS charts. Fixation stability of the better and worse eye were recorded monocularly with the MP-1 microperimeter (Nidek Technologies Srl., Vigonza, PD, Italy) and binocularly with an EyeLink eye tracker (SR Research Ltd., Mississauga, Ontario, Canada). Additional recordings of monocular fixations were obtained with the EyeLink in viewing conditions when one eye viewed the target while the fellow eye was covered by an infrared filter so it could not see the target.
Fixation stability of the better eye did not change across viewing conditions. Fixation stability of the worse eye was 84% to 100% better in the binocular condition than in monocular conditions. Fixation stability of the worse eye was significantly larger (P < 0.05) than that of the better eye when recorded monocularly with the MP-1 microperimeter. This difference was dramatically reduced in the binocular condition but remained marginally significant (95% confidence interval, −0.351 to −0.006). For the better eye, there was a moderate relationship between fixation stability and visual acuity, both monocular and binocular, in all conditions in which this eye viewed the target.
Fixational ocular motor control and visual acuity are driven by the better-seeing eye when patients with AMD and large interocular acuity differences perform the tasks binocularly.
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