COMPARATIVE STUDY
JOURNAL ARTICLE
RESEARCH SUPPORT, NON-U.S. GOV'T
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Representation of the visual field in the striate cortex: comparison of MR findings with visual field deficits in organic mercury poisoning (Minamata disease).

PURPOSE: To compare MR imaging findings of the striate cortex with visual field deficits in patients with Minamata disease and to reestimate the classical Holmes retinotopic map by using the data obtained from comparing visual field abnormalities with degree of visual cortex atrophy.

METHODS: MR imaging was performed in eight patients with Minamata disease who had been given a full neuroophthalmic examination, including Goldmann dynamic perimetry. The atrophic portions of the calcarine area were measured in the sagittal plane next to the midsagittal image and represented as a percentage of atrophy of the total length of the calcarine fissure. MR findings were compared with results of a visual field test.

RESULTS: The visual field test revealed moderate to severe concentric constriction of the visual fields, with central vision ranging from 7 degrees to 42 degrees (mean, 19 degrees). The ventral portion of the calcarine sulcus was significantly dilated on MR images in all patients. A logarithmic correlation was found between the visual field defect and the extent of dilatation of the calcarine fissure. The central 10 degrees and 30 degrees of vision seemed to fill about 20% and 50% of the total surface area of the calcarine cortex, respectively.

CONCLUSION: Visual field deficits in patients with Minamata disease correlated well with MR findings of the striate cortex. Our data were consistent with the classical Holmes retinotopic map.

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