Skip to main content
Log in

The visual sensitivity of women during the menstrual cycle

  • Published:
Documenta Ophthalmologica Aims and scope Submit manuscript


Five women were examined with dark adaptometry and a signal detection procedure for seven consecutive days in the middle of their menstrual cycles. Their discriminability indices show significant (p < 0.05) increases in visual sensitivity on the basal body temperature rise day, while five control observers show no changes across four consecutive days.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in via an institution to check access.

Access this article

Subscribe and save

Springer+ Basic
EUR 32.99 /Month
  • Get 10 units per month
  • Download Article/Chapter or Ebook
  • 1 Unit = 1 Article or 1 Chapter
  • Cancel anytime
Subscribe now

Buy Now

Price excludes VAT (USA)
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.

Instant access to the full article PDF.

Similar content being viewed by others


  • Botella-Llusia, J. Endocrinology of Woman. W.B. Saunders: Philadelphia (1973).

    Google Scholar 

  • Diamond, M., Diamond, A.L. & Mast, M. Visual sensitivity and sexual arousal levels during the menstrual cycle.J. Nerv. Ment. Dis. 155:170–176 (1972).

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • Feldman, F., Bain, J. & Matuk, A.B. Daily assessment of ocular and hormonal variables throughout the menstrual cycle.Arch. Ophthalmol. 96:1835–1838 (1978).

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • Hecht, S. Rods, cones, and the chemical basis of vision.Physiol. Rev. 125:239–290 (1937).

    Google Scholar 

  • Jennings, J.R. & Wood, C.C. Theε-adjustment procedure for repeated-measures analyses of variance.Psychophysiology 13:277–278 (1976).

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • Kenshalo, D. Changes in cool threshold associated with phases of the menstrual cycle.J. Appl. Physiol. 21:1031–1039 (1966).

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • Laurence, P.A. & Sobol, A.E. Changes in serum vitamin A level during the human menstrual cycle.J. Clin. Endocrinol. Metab. 13:1192–1200 (1953).

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • LeMagnen, J. L'olfaction: le fonctionnement olfactif et son intervention dans les regulations psycho-physiologiques.J. Physiol. (Paris) 45:289–326 (1953).

    Google Scholar 

  • Luce, R.D. Detection and recognition. In Handbook of Mathematical Psychology, Vol. 1. Luce, R.D., R.R. Bush, E. Galanter (Eds.). Wiley: New York (1963).

    Google Scholar 

  • Rosenthal, R. Experimenter Effects in Behavioral Research. Appleton-Century-Crofts: New York (1966).

    Google Scholar 

  • Rushton, W.A.H. Light and dark adaptation.Invest. Ophthalmol. 11:503–517 (1972).

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • Schneider, R.A., Costiloe, J.P., Howard, R.P. & Wolf, S. Olfactory perception thresholds in hypogonadal women: changes accompanying administration of androgen and estrogen.J. Clin. Endocrinol. Metab. 18:379–390 (1958).

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • Sweeney, E.J., Kinney, J.A.S. & Ryan, A.P. Seasonal changes in scotopic sensitivity.J. Opt. Soc. Am. 50:237–240 (1960).

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • Swets, J.A. The relative operating characteristic in psychology.Science 182:990–1000 (1973).

    Google Scholar 

  • Thorneycroft, A.I., Mishell Jr., D.R. Stone, S.C., Karma, K.M. & Nakamura, R.M. The relation of serum 17-hydroxyprogesterone and estradiol 17-beta levels during the human menstrual cycle.Am. J. Obstet. Gynecol. 111:947–951 (1971).

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • Winer, B.J. Statistical Principles in Experimental Design. McGraw-Hill: New York (1962).

    Google Scholar 

  • Wood, C.C. Discriminability, response bias, and phoneme categories in discrimination of voice onset time.J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 60:1381–1389 (1976).

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • Young, R.W. Visual cells, daily rhythms, and vision research.Vision Res. 18:573–578 (1978).

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Rights and permissions

Reprints and permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Barris, M.C., Dawson, W.W. & Theiss, C.L. The visual sensitivity of women during the menstrual cycle. Doc Ophthalmol 49, 293–301 (1980).

Download citation

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: