In this thesis a modified Canon IR optometer was used to record static and continuous responses of accommodation during sustained visual tasks. The instrument was assessed with regard to the ocular exit pupil used, its frequency response and noise levels. Experimental work concerned essentially the temporal characteristics and neurological basis of the accommodative mechanism. In the absence of visual stimuli, the accommodative system assumes a resting or tonic accommodative (TA) position, which may be modified by periods of sustained fixation. The rate of regression from a near task to TA in darkness has exhibited differences between regression rates for enunetropes (EMMs) compared with late-onset myopes (WMs). The rate of accommodative regression from a task set at 3D above TA was examined for a group of 10 EMMs and 10 LOMs for 3 conditions: saline, timolol and betaxolol. Timolol retarded the regression to TA for a sub-group of EMMs. The patterns of regression for the remaining emmetropes mirrored that for the LOMs, the drugs showing no difference in rate of regression compared with the saline condition. This provides support for the conjecture that LOMs and certain EMMs appear to be deficient in a sympathetic inhibitory component to the ciliary muscle which may attenuate adaptational changes in tonus and which leave them susceptible to the development of LOM. It is well established that the steady-state accommodative response is characterised by temporal changes in lens power having 2 dominant frequency components: a low frequency component (LFC: < 0.6Hz) and a high frequency component (HFC: 1.0-2.2Hz). This thesis investigates various aspects of these microfluctuations of accommodation.The HFC of accommodative fluctuations was shown to be present in central and peripheral lens zones, although the magnitude of the rms of accommodative microfluctuations was found to be reduced in the lens periphery. These findings concur with the proposal that the lens capsule acts as a force distributor, transmitting the tension from the zonules evenly over the whole of the lens surface.An investigation into the correlation between arterial pulse and the HFC of accommodative fluctuations showed that the peak frequency of the HFC was governed by the arterial pulse frequency. It was proposed that the microflucutations comprised a combination of neurological control (LFC) and physiological variations (HFC).The effect of timolol maleate on the steady-state accommodative response for a group of 10 emmetropes showed that timolol reduced significantly the rms of accommodative microfluctuations in treated but not untreated eyes. Consequently, the effect was considered to be locally, rather than systemically induced.The influence of the sympathetic system on within-task measurements of accommodation was examined by recording the accommodative response of 3 subjects to a sinusoidally moving target at 6 temporal frequencies from 0.05Hz to 0.5Hz for 3 drug conditions: saline, timolol and betaxolol. Timolol caused a reduced gain for frequencies below 0.3 whereas betaxolol reduced accommodative gain for all frequencies. It was proposed that the results for timolol were consistent with temporal response characteristics of sympathetic innervation of the ciliary muscle whereas the betaxolol results were thought to be a manifestation of fatigue resulting from the CNS depressant effect of the drug.
|Date of Award||1991|
|Supervisor||Barry Winn (Supervisor)|
- beta-adrenergic receptor antagonist
- temporal accommodative response