The nonscotoma group did not differ from the control subjects in any gaze task measure. However, the gaze direction judgments of the scotoma group had significantly greater variability than those of the nonscotoma and control groups (p < 0.001). In addition, their mutual gaze range tended to be wider (p = 0.15), suggesting a more liberal judgment criterion. Contrast sensitivity was the strongest predictor of variability in gaze direction judgments followed by self-reported difficulties.
Our results suggest that mutual gaze perception is relatively robust to CVL. However, a follow-up study that simulates less-than-optimal viewing conditions of everyday social interactions is needed. The gaze perception task holds promise as a research tool for investigating the effects of vision impairment on mutual gaze judgments. Self-reported difficulty and contrast sensitivity were both independent predictors of gaze perception performance, suggesting that the task captured higher-order as well as low-level visual abilities.