Chapter

Effects of visual deprivation

Ian P. Howard

in Perceiving in Depth

Published in print February 2012 | ISBN: 9780199764143
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199949359 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199764143.003.0241

Series: Oxford Psychology Series

Effects of visual deprivation

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Visual deprivation in early life disrupts the development of the visual system, especially binocular vision. The chapter starts with a review of the effects of rearing animals in darkness and the effects of blindness in humans. Monocular deprivation in early life produces permanent defects in the deprived eye—a condition known as amblyopia. The amblyopic eye has reduced acuity and stereoscopic vision is lost. Monocular deprivation disrupts vision only when applied during a critical period in early life, and different types of monocular deprivation such as loss of one eye, squint, and monocular occlusion, produce different types of amblyopia. A review of retinal, subcortical, and cortical effects of monocular deprivation is followed by a review of what is known about mechanisms of neural plasticity responsible for amblyopia.

Keywords: dark rearing; monocular deprivation; neural plasticity; amblyopia; critical period

Chapter.  36321 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Neuroscience

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