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December 1963

Transient Bilateral Blurring of VisionConsiderations of an Episodic Ischemic Symptom of Vertebral-Basilar Insufficiency

Author Affiliations

San Francisco
From the Departments of Ophthalmology and Neurological Surgery, University of California Medical Center, San Francisco, California.

Arch Ophthalmol. 1963;70(6):746-751. doi:10.1001/archopht.1963.00960050748005

Transient recurrent bilateral visual blurring is one of the most frequent symptoms of insufficiency of the vertebral-basilar arterial system.1-4 This cerebral symptom, like the monocular retinal blackout of intermittent carotid insufficiency,5 is a common forerunner of stroke.6,7 Understanding of the mechanisms underlying transient cerebral ischemia and early recognition of its symptoms are essential if preventive measures are to be developed and applied in patients before a major stroke occurs.

Episodic visual blurring is an important clinical indicator of vascular insufficiency in the occipital cortex of the brain. Mechanisms responsible for this symptom must include dynamic factors, superimposed on static occlusive lesions, that both reduce and then increase blood flow to the occipital cortex. This review will present clinical pathophysiological aspects of the ischemic cerebral episode as exemplified by transient bilateral blurring of vision.

Bilateral Blurring of Vision: Clinical Characteristics  The bilateral episode of blurring or dimming of

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