Medical Definition of Visual field

  • Medical Author:
    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.

Visual field: The entire area that can be seen when the eye is directed forward, including that which is seen with peripheral vision.

The visual field can be tested to measure the extent and distribution of the field of vision. The test may be done by a number of methods including what are termed confrontation, tangent screen exam and automated perimetry. Many diseases can adversely affect the visual field including glaucoma, strokes, high blood pressure (hypertension), diabetes, multiple sclerosis, overactivity of the thyroid gland (hyperthyroidism). Medications can also affect the visual field, some of which include the antimalarial medicines chloroquine (ATABRINE) and hydroxychloroquine (PLAQUENIL).

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Reviewed on 12/27/2018

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