By Goh Jiah Ying, IECRC

Visual electrophysiology is an objective, non-invasive test consisting of several techniques to record electrical signals emitted from the retina, optic nerve and brain in response to visual stimuli. It has the ability to pick up sight-threatening conditions from changes in the electrophysiological responses when the retina, optic nerve and higher visual pathways are affected by different conditions.

Electrophysiological tests are also helpful in providing information on the visual function of young children or people with communication difficulties. They can also test the visual function even in the presence of advanced cataract that obscures the retina and optic nerve.

Unlike optical coherence tomography or OCT that examines eye structures and records cell deaths, electrophysiological tests can record retinal ganglion cell and optic nerve dysfunction. They can aid ophthalmologists to detect early glaucoma and to monitor efficacy of treatment.

Senior ophthalmologists Dr Au Eong Kah Guan, Dr Ajeet Madhav Wagle and Dr Joy Chan as well as optometrists from International Eye Cataract Retina Centre and Singapore International Eye Cataract Retina Centre participated in a webinar on Electrophysiological Tests for the Eye on 4 May 2017. Through this webinar conducted by Mr Matthew Emmer and Mr Bill Shields from the US, they were able to update their knowledge on the use of electrophysiological tests in various clinical situations.