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An Affordable Method for Evaluation of Ataxic Disorders Based on Electrooculography

Lopez, A. ; Ferrero, F. ; Postolache, O.

Sensors Vol. 19, Nº 17, pp. 1 - 16, August, 2019.

ISSN (print): 1424-3210
ISSN (online): 1424-8220

Scimago Journal Ranking: 0,65 (in 2019)

Digital Object Identifier: 10.3390/s19173756

Ataxias are a group of neurodegenerative disorders characterized by cerebellar dysfunction that cause irregularities in the rate, rhythm, amplitude, and force of voluntary movements. The electrooculogram (EOG) may provide clues about ataxic disorders because most of these patients have difficulty with visual tracking and fixing their gaze. Using electrodes, EOG records the biopotentials generated by eye movements. In this paper, three surface electrodes are placed around the eye socket, and the biopotentials generated by eye movements are acquired using a commercial bioamplifier device. Next, the signals are sent to the computer to be digitally processed to extract the rate of saccades as well as the delay and deviation of the gaze in response to a stimulus. These features are analysed in a novel software application designed to help physicians in evaluating ataxia. After applying several tests to both healthy and ataxia-affected patients, differences in EOG results were found. The evaluation of the reliability of the designed software application is made according to three metrics: sensitivity, specificity, and accuracy. The results indicate the proposed system’s viability as an affordable method for evaluation of ataxic disorders