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Desmond M. Connolly, John L. Barbur, Sarah L. Hosking, Ian R. Moorhead; Mild Hypoxia Impairs Chromatic Sensitivity in the Mesopic Range. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2008;49(2):820-827. doi: 10.1167/iovs.07-1004.
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purpose. The effect of mild hypoxia on chromatic sensitivity in the mesopic range is poorly documented. This study was conducted to examine the effects of mild hypoxia and hyperoxia on red-green (R-G) and yellow-blue (Y-B) chromatic sensitivity thresholds at low photopic (22.3 cd · m−2), borderline upper mesopic (1.67 cd · m−2) and mid-mesopic (0.21 cd · m−2) luminance.
methods. The Color Assessment and Diagnosis (CAD) test was used to measure binocular and monocular R-G and Y-B chromatic sensitivity by using dynamic luminance contrast noise to isolate the use of color signals. Mild hypoxia was imposed by breathing 14.1% oxygen and was investigated relative to control exposures breathing air (normoxia) at each light level. Subsequently, hyperoxia, breathing 100% oxygen, was assessed relative to hypoxia under the mesopic conditions. A balanced, repeated-measures design allowed assessment of main effects and interactions of light level, viewing condition, gender, breathing gas, and exposure order by using multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA), with post hoc analysis employing ANOVA and paired t-tests.
results. Light level, number of viewing eyes, and oxygenation state were significant determinants of chromatic sensitivity. One man and one woman introduced orthogonal sources of gender bias. The CAD test revealed minimal deuteranomaly (R-G deficiency) in the man and loss of Y-B sensitivity in the only woman using hormonal contraception.
conclusions. In the mesopic range, mild hypoxia impairs chromatic sensitivity progressively with reducing luminance. Binocular summation of chromatic signals is consistent and independent of the luminance channel. The CAD test is highly sensitive to mild congenital and acquired color vision deficiencies.
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