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Fast clinical assessment of contrast sensitivity, the Uppsala contrast sensitivity test (UCST)

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Session Details

Session Title: Imaging

Session Date/Time: Tuesday 16/09/2014 | 08:00-10:30

Paper Time: 09:27

Venue: Capital Hall B

First Author: : P.Söderberg SWEDEN

Co Author(s): :    L. Malmqvist              

Abstract Details


To develop a method for contrast sensitivity assessment that allows clinical routine use.


The XXXII Congress of the ESCRS, 13 - 17 September 2014, ExCel London


A new contrast sensitivity system was built with an iPAD connected to a 24” TFT-screen TFT monitor with a HDMI cable. The monitor was calibrated with a colorimeter. An image, showing incrementing spatial frequency along the x-axis and decreasing contrast along the Y-axis, was generated with custom software that allowed imaging on the the iPAD or the TFT monitor. While watching the image on the TFT monitor at 5 m, the subject was asked to draw a line in between contrast perceived and no contrast perceived. The line drawn by the subject was shown on the screen in use after the end of the tracking. The contrast perceived at each spatial frequency was stored in a data file. Totally, 20 subjects with visual acuity 1.0 and no known eye pathology were randomized on 2 groups with 6 males and 4 males to be measured for contrast sensitivity on both eyes with Vistech 6500 chart or UCST, depending on group belonging. Spectral contrast sensitivity was recorded for each eye and the time consumed for assessment of spectral contrast sensitivity was measured.


The recording of 1 spectral contrast sensitivity was 7 times faster with the UCST, CI(0.95)-Mean examination time = 87 ±27 s, d.f. = 9, than with the Vistech 6500 chart, CI(0.95)-Mean examination time = 13.4 ±3.8 s, d.f. = 9. An analysis of variance indicated more variation among individuals with the Vistech 6500 chart than with the UCST. The spectrally integrated spectral contrast sensitivity function measured with the UCST was slightly lower than that measured with Vistech 6500.


UCST allows 7 times faster contrast sensitivity measurement than Vistech 6500 suggesting that routine clinical use is possible with UCST. The slightly lower integrated spectral sensitivity as measured with UCST than with Vistech 6500 is probably related to a software limitation in the current version of the UCST that can be improved. There is potential to improve spectral as well as the constrast resolution of measurements with UCST.

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