The pharmacological treatment of nystagmus: a review

Expert Opin Pharmacother. 2009 Aug;10(11):1805-16. doi: 10.1517/14656560902978446.


Nystagmus is an involuntary, to-and-fro movement of the eyes that can result in a reduction in visual acuity and oscillopsia. Mechanisms that cause nystagmus are better understood in some forms, such as acquired periodic alternating nystagmus, than in others, for example acquired pendular nystagmus, for which there is limited knowledge. Effective pharmacological treatment exists to reduce nystagmus, particularly in acquired nystagmus and, more recently, infantile nystagmus. However, as there are very few randomized controlled trials in the area, most pharmacological treatment options in nystagmus remain empirical.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Amines / therapeutic use
  • Animals
  • Baclofen / therapeutic use
  • Cyclohexanecarboxylic Acids / therapeutic use
  • Gabapentin
  • Humans
  • Memantine / therapeutic use
  • Nystagmus, Congenital / drug therapy*
  • Nystagmus, Congenital / physiopathology
  • Nystagmus, Pathologic / drug therapy*
  • Nystagmus, Pathologic / physiopathology
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • gamma-Aminobutyric Acid / therapeutic use


  • Amines
  • Cyclohexanecarboxylic Acids
  • gamma-Aminobutyric Acid
  • Gabapentin
  • Baclofen
  • Memantine