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Transient increase of intact visual field size by high-frequency narrow-band stimulation

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Abstract

Three patients with visual field defects were stimulated with a square matrix pattern, either static, or flickering at frequencies that had been found to either promote or not promote blindsight performance. Comparison between pre- and post-stimulation perimetric maps revealed an increase in the size of the intact visual field but only for flicker frequencies previously found to promote blindsight. These changes were temporary but dramatic - in two instances the intact field was increased by an area of ~30deg2 of visual angle. These results indicate that not only does specific high-frequency stimulus flicker promote blindsight, but that intact visual field size may be increased by stimulation at the same frequencies. Our findings inform speculation on both the brain mechanisms and the potency of temporal modulation for altering the functional visual field.

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Elliott, M. A., Seifert, D., Poggel, D. A., & Strasburger, H. (2015). Transient increase of intact visual field size by high-frequency narrow-band stimulation. Consciousness and Cognition, 32, 45–55. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.concog.2014.09.003

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