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Relative Afferent Pupillary Defect

August 18th, 2017


The swinging eye test is used to assess for a relative afferent pupillary defect (RAPD), a sign of an asymmetric pathology affecting the pupillary reflex pathway.
  • How to Elicit

  • Shine a light into one eye, swing it into the other eye, and so on back and forth.
  • Interpretation

  • An RAPD is present if the affected eye dilates, or constricts briefly followed by dilatation.
  • Causes of Relative Afferent Pupillary Defect

  • Intraocular haemorrhage
  • Retinal detachment
  • Optic or oculomotor nerve lesion
  • Midbrain lesion
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