Visual Fields at Follow-up in the Ischemic Optic Neuropathy Decompression Trial. Evaluation of Change in Pattern Defect and Severity Over Time

Roberta W. Scherer, Steven E. Feldon, Lori Levin, Patricia Langenberg, Joanne Katz, Penelope M. Keyl, P. David Wilson, Shalom E. Kelman, Kay Dickersin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Purpose: To evaluate change from baseline to 12 months follow-up in study and nonstudy (fellow) eye visual fields from the Ischemic Optic Neuropathy Decompression Trial (IONDT). Design: Randomized controlled trial and observational study. Participants: The IONDT enrolled patients ≥50 years with acute nonarteritic ischemic optic neuropathy (NAION). Randomized patients (n = 258) had visual acuity ≤20/64; nonrandomized patients (n = 160) had visual acuity >20/64 or refused randomization. Interventions: Optic nerve decompression surgery (n = 127) or careful follow-up (n = 131). Main Outcome Measures: We measured visual fields at baseline and at 6 and 12 months follow-up. Using a computerized system, we classified visual field defects by pattern, location, and severity. We examined changes over time by treatment group, age, baseline comorbidities, and change in visual acuity. In fellow (nonstudy) eyes, we assessed change by whether NAION was present at baseline and also incidence of NAION by whether a visual field defect was present at baseline. Results: We analyzed 245 study eye visual field pairs (179 and 66, randomized and nonrandomized, respectively) for change from baseline to 12 months. We observed significant changes in defect distribution within the central field (P = 0.02) for randomized eyes. Superior and inferior altitudinal defects were less severe at follow-up in both randomized and nonrandomized eyes. We observed an association between change in central field severity and change in visual acuity from baseline (P<0.001 at 6 months; P = 0.01 at 12 months; Kendall's tau-b), but no association between visual field change and treatment group, age, or baseline comorbidities. Superior and inferior visual field defects present at baseline in nonstudy eyes improved at follow-up. Fellow (nonstudy) eyes with normal fields did not have an increased risk of developing NAION compared with eyes with ≥1 defects. Conclusions: Visual fields of NAION patients enrolled in the IONDT were relatively stable from baseline to follow-up. A visual field defect in the nonstudy eye at baseline was not associated with development of NAION during follow-up compared with eyes with normal fields. Financial Disclosure(s): The authors have no proprietary or commercial interest in any materials discussed in this article.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1809-1817
Number of pages9
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology


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