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Title: Saccadic eye movement measurements in the normal eye : investigating the clinical value of a non-invasive eye movement monitoring apparatus
Author: Kavasakali, Maria
ISNI:       0000 0001 3595 7011
Awarding Body: University of Bradford
Current Institution: University of Bradford
Date of Award: 2005
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Clinicians are becoming increasingly aware of the effect of various pathologies on the characteristics of saccadic eye movements. As such, an efficient and non-invasive means of measuring eye-movement in a clinical environment is of interest to many. The aim of this thesis is to investigate the clinical application of a non-invasive eye movement recording technique as a part of a clinical examination. Eye movements were measured using an IRIS 6500 infrared limbal eye tracker, which we customized for the direct recording of oblique eye movements as well as horizontal and vertical. Firstly, the eye-tracker itself was assessed. Visually normal observers made saccadic eye movements to a 10' stimulus in eight directions of gaze. Primary (ANOVA) and secondary analyses (mean error less than 5%) resulted in acceptance that averaging four measurements would give a representative measurement of saccadic latency, peak velocity, amplitude and duration. Test-retest results indicated that this technique gives statistically (± 1.96*STDEVDifference) repeatable responses. Several factors that could potentially influence clinically based measures of eye-movements were examined. These included, the effect of ageing, viewing distances, dioptric blur and cataract. The results showed that saccadic latency and duration are significantly (p < 0.05) longer in older (60-89 years) observers compared to younger (20-39 years). Peak velocity and amplitude were not significantly affected by the age of the observer. All saccadic parameters (SP) were significantly affected by direction (Chapter 5). The compact nature of this eye movement methodology is obtainable since there is no significant effect on viewing distance (300 cm vs. 49 cm) (Chapter 6). There is also no significant effect of dioptric blur (up to +LOODS) on any of the four SP. In contrast, a higher level of defocus (+3.O ODS) has a larger probability of interfering with the measurements of peak velocity and duration (Chapter 7). Saccadic eye-movements were also recorded whilst normally sighted subjects wore cataract simulation goggles. The results suggested that the presence of dense cataract introduces significant increases in saccadic latencies and durations. No effect was found on the peak velocities and amplitudes. The effect of amblyopia on SP was also investigated in order to examine if this methodology is able to detect normal from abnormal responses (i.e. increased saccadic latencies). This set of data (Chapter9 ) showed that using IRIS 6500, longer than normal latencies may be recorded from the amblyopic eye but no consistent effect was found for the other SP (peak velocity, amplitude, duration). Overall, the results of this thesis demonstrate that the IRIS 6500 eye-tracker has many desirable elements (it is non-invasive; comfortable for the observers and gives repeatable and precise results in an acceptable time) that would potentially make it a useful clinical tool as a part of a routine examination.
Supervisor: Douthwaite, William A. ; Hazel, Charlotte ; Bloj, Marina Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Saccadic eye movements (SEM) ; Infrared eye tracker ; Saccadic parameters (SP) ; Repeatability ; Aging ; Oblique directions ; Working distance ; Dioptric blur ; Cataract simulation