Background: A study was performed to evaluate whether visual field analysis using a perimetric nerve fiber bundle map gives information additional to global visual field indices and cumulative defect curves for early glaucoma diagnosis.
Methods: One hundred and four control subjects, 124 patients with ocular hypertension (OHT), 97 patients with high-tension glaucoma without visual field defects (preHTG) and 91 patients with open-angle glaucoma with visual field defects [30 low-tension glaucoma (LTG), 61 high-tension glaucoma (HTG)] were included in this study. Correlation analyses were performed between (a) global visual field indices and total neuroretinal rim (NRR) area; (b) local mean values of four visual field areas and the NRR area of the corresponding four optic disk sectors; and (c) local mean values of 10 perimetric nerve fiber bundles (PNFB 1-10) according to Weber and Ulrich (1991) and the four optic disk sectors. The correlations were adjusted for global mean defect and total NRR.
Results: There were no significant correlations between NRR area and visual field in control subjects or in patients with OHT or preHTG for all three analyses. Significant correlations were found between the global visual field indices and the total NRR area for LTG and HTG. Significant correlations between local mean defects and NRR area of corresponding optic disk sectors were found only in LTG for the superior and inferior visual field area and the PNFB covering these areas.
Conclusion: The method used for visual field analysis and sectorization of the optic disk does not give additional information on visual field defects in patients with normal global visual field indices and a normal cumulative defect curve. The nerve fiber bundle-related visual field analysis allows the topographical determination and quantification of glaucomatous damage.