Examination variability in short-wavelength automated perimetry

  • Robert P. Cubbidge

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy


The study evaluated sources of within- and between-subject variability in standard white-on-white (W-W) perimetry and short-wavelength automated perimetry (SWAP). The Influence of staircase strategy on the fatigue effect in W-W perimetry was investigated for a 4 dB single step, single reversal strategy; a variable step size, single reversal dynamic strategy; and the standard 4-2 dB double reversal strategy. The fatigue effect increased as the duration of the examination Increased and was greatest in the second eye for all strategies. The fatigue effect was lowest for the 4dB strategy, which exhibited the shortest examination time and was greatest for the 4-2 dB strategy, which exhibited the longest examination time. Staircase efficiency was lowest for the 4 dB strategy and highest for the dynamic strategy which thus offers a reduced examination time and low inter-subject variability. The normal between-subject variability of SWAP was determined for the standard 4-2 dB double reversal strategy and the 3 dB single reversal FASTPAC strategy and compared to that of W-W perimetry, The decrease in sensitivity with Increase in age was greatest for SWAP. The between-subject variability of SWAP was greater than W-W perimetry. Correction for the Influence of ocular media absorption reduced the between-subject variability of SWAP, The FASTPAC strategy yielded the lowest between-subject variability In SWAP, but the greatest between-subject variability In WoW perimetry. The greater between-subject variability of SWAP has profound Implications for the delineation of visual field abnormality, The fatigue effect for the Full Threshold strategy in SWAP was evaluated with conventional opaque, and translucent occlusion of the fellow eye. SWAP exhibited a greater fatigue effect than W-W perimetry. Translucent occlusion reduced the between-subject variability of W-W perimetry but Increased the between-subject variability of SWAP. The elevation of sensitivity was greater with translucent occlusion which has implications for the statistical analysis of W-W perimetry and SWAP. The influence of age-related cataract extraction and IOL implantation upon the visual field derived by WoW perimetry and SWAP was determined. Cataract yielded a general reduction In sensitivity which was preferentially greater in SWAP, even after the correction of SWAP for the attenuation of the stimulus by the ocular media. There was no correlation between either backward or forward light scatter and the magnitude of the attenuation of W-W or SWAP sensitivity. The post-operative mean deviation in SWAP was positive and has ramifications for the statistical Interpretation of SWAP. Short-wavelength-sensitive pathway isolation was assessed as a function of stimulus eccentricity using the two-colour Increment threshold method. At least 15 dB of SWS pathway Isolation was achieved for 440 nm, 450 nm and 460 nm stimuli at a background luminance of 100 cdm-2, There was a slight decrease In SWS pathway Isolation for all stimulus wavelengths with increasing eccentricity which was not of clinical significance. Adopting a 450 nm stimulus may reduce between-subject variability In SWAP due to a reduction In ocular media absorption and macular pigment absorption.

Date of Award1997
Original languageEnglish


  • variability
  • short-wavelength
  • automated perimetry
  • staircase strategy
  • fatigue effect
  • age-related cataract
  • SWS Isolation

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