City Research Online

Age‐related normal limits for spatial vision

Keuken, A., Subramanian, A. ORCID: 0000-0001-8104-5312, Mueller‐Schotte, S. & Barbur, J. L. ORCID: 0000-0002-2187-5004 (2022). Age‐related normal limits for spatial vision. Ophthalmic and Physiological Optics, 42(6), pp. 1363-1378. doi: 10.1111/opo.13037


To establish age-related, normal limits of monocular and binocular spatial vision under photopic and mesopic conditions.

Photopic and mesopic visual acuity (VA) and contrast thresholds (CTs) were measured with both positive and negative contrast optotypes under binocular and monocular viewing conditions using the Acuity-Plus (AP) test. The experiments were carried out on participants (age range from 10 to 86 years), who met pre-established, normal sight criteria. Mean and ± 2.5σ limits were calculated within each 5-year subgroup. A biologically meaningful model was then fitted to predict mean values and upper and lower threshold limits for VA and CT as a function of age. The best-fit model parameters describe normal aging of spatial vision for each of the 16 experimental conditions investigated.

Out of the 382 participants recruited for this study, 285 participants passed the selection criteria for normal aging. Log transforms were applied to ensure approximate normal distributions. Outliers were also removed for each of the 16 stimulus conditions investigated based on the ±2.5σ limit criterion. VA, CTs and the overall variability were found to be age-invariant up to ~50 years in the photopic condition. A lower, age-invariant limit of ~30 years was more appropriate for the mesopic range with a gradual, but accelerating increase in both mean thresholds and intersubject variability above this age. Binocular thresholds were smaller and much less variable when compared to the thresholds measured in either eye. Results with negative contrast optotypes were significantly better than the corresponding results measured with positive contrast (p < 0.004).

This project has established the expected age limits of spatial vision for monocular and binocular viewing under photopic and high mesopic lighting with both positive and negative contrast optotypes using a single test, which can be implemented either in the clinic or in an occupational setting.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2022 The Authors. Ophthalmic and Physiological Optics published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of College of Optometrists. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Publisher Keywords: contrast thresholds, functional contrast sensitivity, mesopic vision, normal age limits, photopic vision, visual acuity
Subjects: R Medicine > RE Ophthalmology
Departments: School of Health & Psychological Sciences > Optometry & Visual Sciences
[thumbnail of Ophthalmic Physiologic Optic - 2022 - Keuken - Age‐related normal limits for spatial vision.pdf]
Text - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.

Download (9MB) | Preview


Add to AnyAdd to TwitterAdd to FacebookAdd to LinkedinAdd to PinterestAdd to Email


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics

Actions (login required)

Admin Login Admin Login