Multiplexing Prisms for Field Expansion

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Abstract

PURPOSE

Prisms used for field expansion are limited by the optical scotoma at a prism apex (apical scotoma). For a patient with two functioning eyes, fitting prisms unilaterally allows the other eye to compensate for the apical scotoma. A monocular patient’s field loss cannot be expanded with a conventional or Fresnel prism because of the apical scotoma. A newly invented optical device, the multiplexing prism (MxP), was developed to overcome the apical scotoma limitation in monocular field expansion.

METHODS

A Fresnel–prism–like device with alternating prism and flat elements superimposes shifted and see-through views, thus creating the (monocular) visual confusion required for field expansion and eliminating the apical scotoma. Several implementations are demonstrated and preliminarily evaluated for different monocular conditions with visual field loss. The field expansion of the MxP is compared with the effect of conventional prisms using calculated and measured perimetry.

RESULTS

Field expansion without apical scotomas is shown to be effective for monocular patients with hemianopia or constricted peripheral field. The MxPs are shown to increase the nasal field for a patient with only one eye and for patients with bitemporal hemianopia. The MxPs placed at the far temporal field are shown to expand the normal visual field. The ability to control the contrast ratio between the two images is verified.

CONCLUSIONS

A novel optical device is demonstrated to have the potential for field expansion technology in a variety of conditions. The devices may be inexpensive and can be constructed in a cosmetically acceptable format.

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