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A. Weber, N. Plange, C. Rennings, M. Kaup, J. Huth, P. Wolter, G. Roessler, T. Kirschkamp, A. Remky; Effects of Ethyl Alcohol on Visual Function. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2008;49(13):2541. doi: https://doi.org/.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
To test the effect of ethyl alcohol on visual function in normal subjects.
In 12 normal subjects (age: 27-43 yr; 4 male, 8 female), Frequency Doubling Perimetry (FDT) and Short-wavelength Automated Perimetry (SWAP) was performed before and 60 min after oral intake of 80 ml 40 vol% ethyl alcohol. Mean deviation (MD) and pattern standard deviation (PSD) were evaluated. Additionally, systemic blood pressure, heart beat, intraocular pressure (IOP), and blood alcohol concentration were assessed. Statistical analysis was performed using a paired t-test (Statview).
In FDT, mean deviation decreased significantly from 3.86 ± 0.9 db before to - 0.49 ± 1.9 after ethyl alcohol intake (p= 0.007), whereas PSD did not change significantly (p = 0.70). In SWAP, neither MD nor PSD showed significant changes after alcohol ingestion (p = 0.94 and p = 0.62, respectively). Mean IOP decreased from 12 ±2 mmHg before to 11 ± 2 mmHg after alcohol application (p= 0.01). Neither systemic systolic nor diastolic blood pressure showed significant changes (p=0.20 and 0.70, respectively). Mean blood alcohol concentration was 0.38 ± 0.16 g/l.
Our results show a significant decrease in mean deviation in FDT after alcohol consumption and a slight increase in PSD indicating a general depression in retinal sensitivity with no particular presence of focal defects. Interestingly, in SWAP no changes were detectable. Moreover, our results indicate that low levels of blood alcohol might lead to an IOP reduction.
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