Visual Field Test

  • Medical Author: John Sheppard, MD
  • Medical Editor: William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

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What is a visual field test?

A visual field test is a method of measuring an individual's entire scope of vision, that is their central and peripheral (side) vision. Visual field testing actually maps the visual fields of each eye individually. The visual field test is a subjective examination, requiring the patient to understand the testing instructions, fully cooperate, and complete the entire test in order to provide useful information.

What is a visual field test used for?

Visual field testing is most frequently used to detect any signs of glaucoma damage to the optic nerve. In addition, visual field tests are useful for detection of central or peripheral retinal disease, eyelid conditions such as ptosis or drooping, optic nerve disease, and diseases affecting the visual pathways within the brain. The visual pathways carry information from the eye to the visual or occipital cortex in the brain, where this information is processed into vision.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 6/3/2015

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