[visionlist] Stimulating Nystagmus

Terri Lewis lewistl at mcmaster.ca
Wed Mar 5 22:56:02 GMT 2008

Optokinetic nystagmus is a series of reflexive eye movements elicited  
by a repetitive pattern in the visual field such as telephone poles  
on the side of the road when viewed from the window of a moving  
train. They can also be elicted if the subject is stationary but the  
repetitive pattern is moved in front of  the eyes. These eye  
movements are entirely normal and are elicited even at birth. They  
are very different from the spontaneous eye movements that one  
sometimes sees in patients with eye disorders such as congenital  
nystagmus or early binocular deprivation. These spontaneous  
nystagmoid eye movements occur even in the absence of external  

Attached is one of our studies on the development of optokinetic  
nystagmus in normal infants.

terri lewis

On Mar 5, 2008, at 4:24 PM, Luis Diaz-Santana wrote:

> Hello All,
> I would like to know if there is any literature on stimulating  
> nystagmus on normal subjects. I have noticed that sometimes, on a  
> train, passengers can make very fast and periodic eye movements  
> when following targets outside the train.
> This is outside of my area of expertise, and thought of asking here  
> first, before launching myself in a literature search. I wonder if  
> this has been studied, and how similar these movements are to the  
> ones found in nystagmus patients.
> Many thanks
> Luis
> Luis Diaz-Santana
> Department of Optometry and Visual Science
> City University, Northampton Square
> London, EC1V 0HB, UK.
> http://www.city.ac.uk/optometry/research/laboratories/visor/
> Tel: +44 (0)20 7040 8335
> Fax: +44(0)20 7040 8355
> e-mail: luisd at city.ac.uk
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Terri L. Lewis, PhD
Department of Psychology, Neuroscience & Behaviour
McMaster University

Chair, Psychology Student Research Ethics Committee, McMaster
Adjunct Professor of Ophthalmology & Vision Sciences, U. of Toronto
Vision Scientist, Dept of Ophthalmology, The Hospital for Sick Children
Adjunct Scientist, Research Institute, The Hospital for Sick Children

Mailing address:
Department of Psychology, Neuroscience & Behaviour
McMaster University
Hamilton, Ontario, L8S 4K1, CANADA

Phone: 905-525-9140 Ext. 23009
FAX: 905-529-6225
URL: http://www.science.mcmaster.ca/Psychology/terri.html

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