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Article
March 1952

REPRESENTATION OF CORNEAL AND CONJUNCTIVAL SENSATION IN THE CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM

Author Affiliations

BOSTON
From the Howe Laboratory of Ophthalmology, Harvard University Medical School, and the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary.

AMA Arch Ophthalmol. 1952;47(3):273-275. doi:10.1001/archopht.1952.01700030281001
Abstract

THE CORNEA has generally been believed to have the property of receiving pain but not touch sensation. Thus, a wisp of cotton or a fine hair elicits a distinctly unpleasant sensation when it touches the cornea, and graded test objects are said to elicit no other type of sensation.1 Moreover, tactile end-organs have never been found in the cornea,2 and there is indirect evidence, such as absence of vibration sense and the uniform rate of cocaine-induced anesthesia, that is said to indicate absence of touch sensation in the cornea. But, as indicated in a recent review by Adler,3 the evidence is not unequivocal, and recent observations by neurosurgeons4 on patients who have had the trigeminal tractotomy of Sjöqvist5 have shown uniformly a persistence of nonpainful sensation in the cornea with loss of pain and temperature sensation in the face. This finding has been interpreted as

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