Journal of Neurology

, Volume 234, Issue 5, pp 337–341

Eye movements and vestibulo-ocular reflex in the blind

  • D. Kömpf
  • H.-F. Piper
Original Investigations

DOI: 10.1007/BF00314291

Cite this article as:
Kömpf, D. & Piper, H. J Neurol (1987) 234: 337. doi:10.1007/BF00314291


To assess the effect of chronic deprivation of visual feedback, 21 blind patients underwent clinical and electro-nystagmographical examination. Patients with congenital blindness were characterized by spontaneous eye movements, inability to consciously move the eyes and absence of the vestibulo-ocular reflex (VOR), whereas eye movement abnormalities were practically absent in those with blindness acquired late in life. Active visual experience, at least in early life, seems to be crucial for the development of eye movements and VOR adjustment.

Key words

Development of eye movementsBlindnessVestibulo-ocular reflex

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1987

Authors and Affiliations

  • D. Kömpf
    • 1
  • H.-F. Piper
    • 2
  1. 1.Neurologische Universitätsklinik ErlangenErlangenFederal Republic of Germany
  2. 2.Universitäts-Augenklinik LübeckLübeckFederal Republic of Germany