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May 1963

Retinal Entoptic Phenomena: Some Diagnostic Use

Author Affiliations

St. Louis
Assistant in Ophthalmology, St. Louis University School of Medicine.

Arch Ophthalmol. 1963;69(5):551-555. doi:10.1001/archopht.1963.00960040557003

Retinal entoptic phenomena have been used for many years in studies of retinal physiology. Many of these phenomena can be of diagnostic value, particularly in cases where adequate ophthalmoscopic examination is difficult due to medial opacities. This paper will review some of the retinal entoptic phenomena and consider some of the diagnostic uses to which they have been put. The phenomena to be considered are as follows:

  • Maxwell's spot

  • Loewe's ring

  • Weekers' sign

  • Perimacular capillary circulation

  • Purkinje vascular figure

  • Haidinger's brushes

  • After-images

  • Phosphenes

  • Blue arcs of the retina

  • Moore's lightning streaks

  • Nebel's phosphene of quick eye movement

  • Self light of the eye

  • Macular shagreen

Maxwell's Spot is seen as a tiny dark centeral area, surrounded by a lighter ring which is in turn surrounded by a dark halo. The spot may be produced by looking first through a neutral or yellow filter at a white light and then looking through

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