Prism-induced convergence and vertical vergence for maintaining binocular fusion induced postural instability to a greater extent than diplopic conditions. This finding has important implication in relation to postural control of patients with large exophoria or vertical phoria in optometric clinic.
The purpose of this study was to examine whether binocular single vision with prism-induced horizontal and vertical vergence and diplopia might affect the static postural stability.
Forty-two subjects with a mean ± standard deviation age of 23.79 ± 2.81 years were enrolled in this study. To simulate convergence and divergence, base-in and base-out (BO) prisms of 4 and 8 Δ were added, respectively. To simulate vertical vergence, vertical prism of 2 Δ was added in a trial frame that corrected for the subject's refractive error during far distance (6 m) gaze. The prism power necessary to break fusion in each subject was detected and applied to induce diplopia in horizontal and vertical directions. Indices of general instability and sway power were measured under visual conditions using Tetrax and compared with normal viewing without the prism. Correlations between general instability indices and the ranges of break point in convergence and divergence were analyzed.
Postural instability was increased significantly when convergence induced by BO 4 and 8 Δ and vertical vergence induced by 2 Δ were stimulated. The correlation coefficient between ranges of BO break point and indices of general instability was −0.308 in the BO 4 Δ and −0.306 in the BO 8 Δ condition.
Although binocular input is recognized as an important factor in postural stability, binocular input with excessively stimulated convergence and vertical vergence during a far distance gaze is a latent factor affecting postural stability. On the other hand, diplopia did not influence postural stability.