So what are some of the terms that you can come across at a Functional Neurology appointment? Here’s a list… and the definitions. Presented in no particular order!
Saccade – Eye movements in a non-smooth manner. Usually used to describe following a series of dots on a page, where your eye jumps from one dot to the next.
Pursuit- The opposite of Saccade. The eye movement happens in one continuous movement. Usually following a line.
Complicated background – A background that has lines or stripes of some kind that can create an illusion of movement when your eye follows it.
Optopkinetic stimulus – A type of complicated background. Often run on an electronic device where the bars or stripes can be different colors and widths and the stimulus can run at different speeds.
Directional targeting- similar to optokinetic stimulus but instead of bars, the screen is replaced by objects in a row moving in the same direction.
Halmagyi – a quick movement of the head in one direction with a slow return to the original position. Named after Gabor Halmagyi who created the exercise.
Complicated pattern, or figure eights – The movement of your hand, foot or both in a figure eight pattern. When using both the hand and foot, variations can include circles going in opposite direction, or figure eights in opposite direction. Advanced patients may be asked to spell out words in cursive.
Rotational movement- Spinning on a chair. Often done in conjunction with optopkinetic stimulus and/or directional targeting.
I’m sure there’s more to add to this list. But that will have to wait for another post!