The angular and linear vestibulo-ocular reflex responses are greater when viewing near targets to compensate for the relatively larger translation of the eyes with respect to the target. Our aim was to measure vestibular evoked myogenic potentials using a lateral ocular electrode montage (oVEMP) with a laterally applied stimulus using a mini-shaker during both far- and near-viewing (vergence) distances to determine whether vergence affects the oVEMP response as it does the semicircular canal vestibulo-ocular reflex response. Our results show that during vergence, the p1 and n1-p1 amplitude of the lateral oVEMP response increases significantly, whereas the latencies do not change significantly. We suggest that the physiological basis for this vergence-mediated amplitude increase in potentials may be the same as those already documented using transient linear head accelerations. Our data also suggest that irregular vestibular afferents are likely mediating the vergence-mediated gain increase during linear head accelerations because only irregular afferents are stimulated during short, transient 500 Hz stimuli.
- Reflex, Vestibulo-Ocular
- Semicircular Canals
- Vestibular Evoked Myogenic Potentials