Evaluation of hemifield sector analysis protocol in multifocal visual evoked potential (MFVEP) objective perimetry for the diagnosis and early detection of glaucomatous field defects

  • Mohamed Mousa

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisOphthalmic Doctorate


Visual field assessment is a core component of glaucoma diagnosis and monitoring, and the Standard Automated Perimetry (SAP) test is considered up until this moment, the gold standard of visual field assessment. Although SAP is a subjective assessment and has many pitfalls, it is being constantly used in the diagnosis of visual field loss in glaucoma. Multifocal visual evoked potential (mfVEP) is a newly introduced method used for visual field assessment
objectively. Several analysis protocols have been tested to identify early visual field losses in glaucoma patients using the mfVEP technique, some were successful in detection of field defects, which were comparable to the standard SAP visual field assessment, and others were not very informative and needed more adjustment and research work. In this study, we implemented a
novel analysis approach and evaluated its validity and whether it could be used effectively for early detection of visual field defects in glaucoma. OBJECTIVES: The purpose of this study is to examine the effectiveness of a new analysis method in the Multi-Focal Visual Evoked Potential (mfVEP) when it is used for the objective assessment of the visual field in glaucoma patients, compared to the gold standard technique. METHODS: 3 groups were tested in this study; normal
controls (38 eyes), glaucoma patients (36 eyes) and glaucoma suspect patients (38 eyes). All subjects had a two standard Humphrey visual field HFA test 24-2 and a single mfVEP test undertaken in one session. Analysis of the mfVEP results was done using the new analysis protocol; the Hemifield Sector Analysis HSA protocol. Analysis of the HFA was done using the standard grading system. RESULTS: Analysis of mfVEP results showed that there was a statistically significant difference between the 3 groups in the mean signal to noise ratio SNR (ANOVA p<0.001 with a 95% CI). The difference between superior and inferior hemispheres in all subjects were all statistically significant in the glaucoma patient group 11/11 sectors (t-test p<0.001), partially significant 5/11 (t-test p<0.01) and no statistical difference between most sectors in normal group (only 1/11 was significant) (t-test p<0.9). sensitivity and specificity of the HAS protocol in detecting glaucoma was 97% and 86% respectively, while for glaucoma suspect were 89% and 79%. DISCUSSION: The results showed that the new analysis protocol was able to confirm already existing field defects detected by standard HFA, was able to differentiate between the 3 study groups with a clear distinction between normal and patients with suspected glaucoma; however the distinction between normal and glaucoma patients was especially clear and significant. CONCLUSION: The new HSA protocol used in the mfVEP testing can be used to detect glaucomatous visual field defects in both glaucoma and glaucoma suspect patient. Using this protocol can provide information about focal visual field differences across the horizontal midline, which can be utilized to differentiate between glaucoma and normal subjects. Sensitivity and
specificity of the mfVEP test showed very promising results and correlated with other anatomical changes in glaucoma field loss.
Date of Award13 Jun 2013
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Aston University
SupervisorRobert P Cubbidge (Supervisor)


  • objective perimetry
  • multifocal VEP
  • visual field testng
  • glaucomatous field loss
  • glaucoma suspect
  • SAP
  • HFA

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