Oculomotor functions in focal dystonias: A systematic review.

Hirsig, Anna; Barbey, Carolin; Schüpbach, Michael W.M.; Bargiotas, Panagiotis (2020). Oculomotor functions in focal dystonias: A systematic review. Acta neurologica Scandinavica, 141(5), pp. 359-367. Wiley-Blackwell 10.1111/ane.13224

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Focal Dystonia (FD) is a chronic neurological disorder, which causes twisting and repetitive movements and abnormal postures induced by involuntary sustained contractions of agonist and antagonist muscles. Based on the hypothesis that several dystonia-related brain regions, including cerebellum, are implicated in oculomotor disturbances (OCD), a number of studies investigated oculomotor function in patients with dystonia. However, conceptual clarity with respect to the used assessment tools and interpretation of the findings is lacking in the literature. This is the first article to systematically review studies that assessed oculomotor function in patients with FD. In total, 329 publications, published until September 1, 2019, were identified through MEDLINE search. Twenty out of 329 studies, involving 232 subjects in total, met the inclusion criteria. Most of the studies reported oculomotor disturbances in patients with FD. Abnormalities included asymmetry in vestibulo-ocular reflex (VOR), disturbances in saccadic functions, and prolonged latencies of eye motion. Discrepancies in the results could be explained, at least partially, by the long period of time over which the reviewed studies were published, the different methods used for testing the eye movements, and the limited number of patients assessed since the majority of data derived from case reports or small-scale studies. Further prospective studies with larger subject numbers are needed, using advanced tools for the assessment of oculomotor function in focal dystonia.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Review Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Head Organs and Neurology (DKNS) > Clinic of Neurology
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Psychiatric Services > University Hospital of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy > Translational Research Center

UniBE Contributor:

Schüpbach, Michael and Bargiotas, Panagiotis


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health








Chantal Kottler

Date Deposited:

07 Jul 2020 15:48

Last Modified:

31 Jul 2020 07:32

Publisher DOI:


PubMed ID:


Uncontrolled Keywords:

blepharospasm cerebellum cervical dystonia eye movements infrared reflection technique magnetic search coil technique nystagmography nystagmus saccades vestibular evoked myogenic potentials writer's cramp





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