Tenotomy procedure alleviates the "slow to see" phenomenon in infantile nystagmus syndrome: model prediction and patient data

Vision Res. 2008 Jun;48(12):1409-19. doi: 10.1016/j.visres.2008.03.007. Epub 2008 Apr 28.


Our purpose was to perform a systematic study of the post-four-muscle-tenotomy procedure changes in target acquisition time by comparing predictions from the behavioral ocular motor system (OMS) model and data from infantile nystagmus syndrome (INS) patients. We studied five INS patients who underwent only tenotomy at the enthesis and reattachment at the original insertion of each (previously unoperated) horizontal rectus muscle for their INS treatment. We measured their pre- and post-tenotomy target acquisition changes using data from infrared reflection and high-speed digital video. Three key aspects were calculated and analyzed: the saccadic latency (Ls), the time to target acquisition after the target jump (Lt) and the normalized stimulus time within the cycle. Analyses were performed in MATLAB environment (The MathWorks, Natick, MA) using OMLAB software (OMtools, available from http://www.omlab.org). Model simulations were performed in MATLAB Simulink environment. The model simulation suggested an Lt reduction due to an overall foveation-quality improvement. Consistent with that prediction, improvement in Lt, ranging from approximately 200 ms to approximately 500 ms (average approximately 280 ms), was documented in all five patients post-tenotomy. The Lt improvement was not a result of a reduced Ls. INS patients acquired step-target stimuli faster post-tenotomy. This target acquisition improvement may be due to the elevated foveation quality resulting in less inherent variation in the input to the OMS. A refined behavioral OMS model, with "fast" and "slow" motor neuron pathways and a more physiological plant, successfully predicted this improved visual behavior and again demonstrated its utility in guiding ocular motor research.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Child
  • Computer Simulation
  • Electronystagmography
  • Female
  • Fixation, Ocular
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Models, Neurological*
  • Nystagmus, Congenital / physiopathology*
  • Nystagmus, Congenital / surgery
  • Oculomotor Muscles / physiopathology*
  • Postoperative Period
  • Saccades / physiology*
  • Tendons / physiopathology
  • Tendons / surgery*
  • Video Recording
  • Vision, Binocular / physiology*