Pengjing Xu, Luis Andres Lesmes, Deyue Yu, and Zhong-Lin Lu


Measuring visual functions such as light and contrast sensitivity, visual acuity, reading speed, and crowding across retinal locations provides visual-field maps (VFMs) that are extremely valuable for detecting and managing eye diseases. Although mapping light sensitivity is a standard glaucoma test, the measurement is often noisy (Keltner et al., 2000). Mapping other visual functions is even more challenging. To improve the precision of light-sensitivity mapping and enable other VFM assessments, we developed a novel hybrid Bayesian adaptive testing framework, the qVFM method. The method combines a global module for preliminary assessment of the VFM's shape and a local module for assessing individual visual-field locations. This study validates the qVFM method in measuring light sensitivity across the visual field. In both simulation and psychophysics studies, we sampled 100 visual-field locations (60° × 60°) and compared the performance of qVFM with the qYN procedure (Lesmes et al., 2015) that measured light sensitivity at each location independently. In the simulations, a simulated observer was tested monocularly for 1,000 runs with 1,200 trials/run, to compare the accuracy and precision of the two methods. In the experiments, data were collected from 12 eyes (six left, six right) of six human subjects. Subjects were cued to report the presence or absence of a target stimulus, with the luminance and location of the target adaptively selected in each trial. Both simulations and a psychological experiment showed that the qVFM method can provide accurate, precise, and efficient mapping of light sensitivity. This method can be extended to map other visual functions, with potential clinical signals for monitoring vision loss, evaluating therapeutic interventions, and developing effective rehabilitation for low vision.