Apr 16, 2002

Optokinetic stimuli: motion sickness, visual acuity, and eye movements

Aviation, Space, and Environmental Medicine
Nicholas A Webb, Michael J Griffin


It is commonly assumed that motion sickness caused by moving visual scenes arises from the illusion of self-motion (i.e., vection). Both studies reported here investigated whether sickness and vection were correlated. The first study compared sickness and vection created by real and virtual visual displays. The second study investigated whether visual fixation to suppress eye movements affected motion sickness or vection. In the first experiment subjects viewed an optokinetic drum and a virtual simulation of the optokinetic drum. The second experiment investigated two conditions on a virtual display: a) moving black and white stripes; and b) moving black and white stripes with a stationary cross on which subjects fixated to reduce eye movements. In the first study, ratings of motion sickness were correlated between the conditions (real and the virtual drum), as were ratings of vection. With both conditions, subjects with poor visual acuity experienced greater sickness. There was no correlation between ratings of vection and ratings of sickness in either condition. In the second study, fixation reduced motion sickness but had no affect on vection. Motion sickness was correlated with visual acuity without fixation, but not with f...Continue Reading

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Mentioned in this Paper

Fixation, Ocular
Central Vision
Sample Fixation
Eye Movements
Visual Acuity
Visual Displays
Cox Proportional Hazards Models
Motion Sickness brand of dimenhydrinate
Black and White

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