Visual field progression in glaucoma: Total versus pattern deviation analyses

Paul Artes, Paul H. Artes, Marcelo T. Nicolela, Raymond P. LeBlanc, Balwantray C. Chauhan

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    PURPOSE. To compare visual field progression with total and pattern deviation analyses in a prospective longitudinal study of patients with glaucoma and healthy control subjects. METHODS. A group of 101 patients with glaucoma (168 eyes) with early to moderately advanced visual field loss at baseline (average mean deviation [MD], -3.9 dB) and no clinical evidence of media opacity were selected from a prospective longitudinal study on visual field progression in glaucoma. Patients were examined with static automated perimetry at 6-month intervals for a median follow-up of 9 years. At each test location, change was established with event and trend analyses of total and pattern deviation. The event analyses compared each follow-up test to a baseline obtained from averaging the first two tests, and visual field progression was defined as deterioration beyond the 5th percentile of test-retest variability at three test locations, observed on three consecutive tests. The trend analyses were based on point-wise linear regression, and visual field progression was defined as statistically significant deterioration (P <5%) worse than -1 dB/year at three locations, confirmed by independently omitting the last and the penultimate observation. The incidence and the time-to-progression were compared between total and pattern deviation analyses. To estimate the specificity of the progression analyses, identical criteria were applied to visual fields obtained in 102 healthy control subjects, and the rate of visual field improvement was established in the patients with glaucoma and the healthy control subjects. RESULTS. With both event and trend methods, pattern deviation analyses classified approximately 15% fewer eyes as having progressed than did the total deviation analyses. In eyes classified as progressing by both the total and pattern deviation methods, total deviation analyses tended to detect progression earlier than the pattern deviation analyses. A comparison of the changes observed in MD and the visual fields' general height (estimated by the 85th percentile of the total deviation values) confirmed that change in the glaucomatous eyes almost always comprised a diffuse component. Pattern deviation analyses of progression may therefore underestimate the true amount of glaucomatous visual field progression. CONCLUSIONS. Pattern deviation analyses of visual field progression may underestimate visual field progression in glaucoma, particularly when there is no clinical evidence of increasing media opacity. Clinicians should have access to both total and pattern deviation analyses to make informed decisions on visual field progression in glaucoma. Copyright © Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)4600-4606
    Number of pages6
    JournalInvestigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science
    Issue number12
    Publication statusPublished - Dec 2005


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