Real Advances from Virtual Reality
Combining VR ‘gaming’ technology with advanced wireless electroencephalography may transform the monitoring and diagnosis of visual disorders – particularly glaucoma.
At a Glance
- Standard automated perimetry (SAP) is a cumbersome and poorly objective method of assessing and monitoring visual field deficits
- Recent improvements in virtual reality technology and non-invasive electroencephalography suggest we can directly monitor visual field function at the neurophysiological level, thus eliminating subjectivity
- We have combined the best of these advances into a single, portable device – the nGoggle
- The system has potential to not only improve diagnosis and monitoring, but also broaden patient access and ultimately make a ‘game’ out of visual field assessments
I have always been interested in virtual reality (VR) technology and its potential applications to the evaluation and management of eye conditions; to me, the potential in this area seemed self-evident. But recently, the dramatic improvements we’ve seen in VR systems – in the news almost every day – have been matched by radical advances in data processing algorithms and electroencephalography (EEG) systems. The combination gives us a golden opportunity to develop something of real benefit to glaucoma patients: an accurate, portable and objective method of assessing visual field (VF) loss.
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