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What is a Visual Field Test Exam?


A visual field test is an examination that measures an individual’s scope of vision. This scope of vision refers to a patient’s central and peripheral vision and is performed to map the visual fields of each eye. The purpose of a visual field test is to detect areas of dysfunction in the central and peripheral vision, which may be caused by a variety of medical conditions, such as glaucoma, brain tumors, stroke, and other neurological deficits. The test is performed one eye at a time, in order to map out exactly which areas of each eye’s visual fields are strong or weak.

What Happens in Each Type of Visual Field Test?

Confrontation Visual Field Testing

With the patient looking straight ahead, the ophthalmologist will display stationary or moving targets in the patient’s peripheral vision. While the patient stares straight ahead, the doctor will question what you can see within your peripheral vision. It will only take a few minutes for this test to be performed.

Amsler Grid Visual Field Testing

This test starts with a printed image of a grid with a dot placed in the center. The ophthalmologist will request the patient to look at the dot – one eye at a time and recognize if the grid lines surrounding the dot looks deformed, faint, or incomplete. This type of visual field test will take a few minutes to complete.

Static Automated Perimetry Visual Field Testing

Static testing is the most commonly used method of visual field testing. In this method, the patient may be given a clicker or button to press each time that light quickly flashes within their field of vision. The flashes of light will not move and will only remain visible for a very brief moment. In the early stages of the test, the light will be faint and continue to grow in brightness to record the sensitivity of the visual field. This examination could range from 10-15 minutes.

Kinetic Perimetry Visual Field Testing

Kinetic testing uses spots of light but we move the light from the outside of the patient’s visual field towards the center, while asking the patient to indicate immediately when they are first able to see the light enter their visual field. The kinetic perimetry test will take about 20 minutes to be completed.

Frequency Doubling Perimetry Visual Field Testing

This test implements a blinking image at different ranges to observe the patient’s visual field. This examination is extremely helpful for diagnosing early glaucoma field loss. Frequency doubling perimetry tests take up to 10 minutes.

Get a Visual Field Test at Marano Eye Care

A visual field test can help your ophthalmologist diagnose issues with not only your eyes, but also your optic nerve or brain. If you have any questions about the information provided, please contact us at Marano Eye Care today. With locations in Denville, Livingston, and Newark, our doctors at Marano Eye Care are devoted to providing you with the services you need to keep your eyes healthy. Learn more about additional procedures and tests available for you today at Marano Eye Care.

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