Pattern-reversal visual evoked potentials in infants: gender differences during early visual maturation

Dev Med Child Neurol. 2002 May;44(5):345-51. doi: 10.1017/s0012162201002183.


This paper investigates gender differences in the peak latency and amplitude of the P1 component of the pattern-reversal visual evoked potential (pattern-reversal VEP) recorded in healthy term infants. Pattern-reversal VEPs in response to a series of high contrast black and white checks (check widths 120', 60', 30', 24', 12', 6') were recorded in 50 infants (20 males, 30 females) at 50 weeks post-conceptional age (PCA) and in 49 infants (22 males, 27 females) at 66 weeks PCA. Peak latency of the major component, P1, was considerably shorter in female compared with male infants. Differences in head circumference do not entirely account for the gender differences in peak latency reported here. A gender difference in P1 amplitude was not detected. These findings stress the importance of considering gender norms as well as age-matched norms when utilizing the pattern-reversal VEP in clinical investigations. Studies including a wider range of ages are clearly necessary in order to establish whether the earlier peak latencies in female infants represents a difference in the onset or rate of visual maturation.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Cephalometry
  • Cohort Studies
  • Confounding Factors, Epidemiologic
  • Electroencephalography
  • Evoked Potentials, Visual / physiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Pattern Recognition, Visual / physiology*
  • Photic Stimulation / methods
  • Reaction Time / physiology
  • Sex Factors
  • Vision, Ocular / physiology*