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April 1969

Transient Unilateral Loss of Vision Associated With Oxygen at High Pressure

Author Affiliations

From the Institute for Environmental Medicine and the departments of pharmacology and ophthalmology, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia.

Arch Ophthalmol. 1969;81(4):548-552. doi:10.1001/archopht.1969.00990010550015

Transient, unilateral diminution of vision was produced by exposure for six hours to 2.0 atmospheres (atm) of inspired oxygen in a symptomfree individual with a past history of retrobulbar neuritis. Two distinct processes appear to have been involved in producing the visual disturbance. One is considered to have been an acute expression of oxygen effect on neuronal elements by direct action on enzymes or limitation of nutrient flow. A second process is considered to have been a recrudescence of retrobulbar neuritis. This case emphasizes the need for detailed evaluation of all individuals exposed to oxygen at greater than normal pressures.