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Temporary blazing fast eye movements when thinking

by Psinter
Tags: blazing, movements, temporary
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Psinter
#1
Jun14-14, 12:37 AM
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I was sitting beside my friend and I asked myself a question out loud which required scanning a mapped list (numbers-names) to find the answer. She heard and tried to help. I looked at her eyes while trying to find the answer myself and suddenly her eyes moved very quickly from center to right in a jerky manner (and back again). It lasted for about half a second. She regained focus at me and spelled out the answer.

During those quick movements (from center to right and back again) I realized her eyes were not focused on anything. It was as if she was scanning her own brain with her eyes. I assume they were involuntary movements. I strongly doubt a human can move their eyes' muscles so quickly consciously. The movement loop was simply too fast.

Are there any biological explanations as to what may have happened? Any neurological explanation, or this may actually be quite the complex process to be addressed with a simple answer?

Thanks.
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OmCheeto
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Jun14-14, 01:52 AM
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Quote Quote by Psinter View Post
...
I strongly doubt a human can move their eyes' muscles so quickly consciously. The movement loop was simply too fast.
My sister and I are both capable of this. It's quite conscious, and quite deliberate. Though, it's not like trying to move your eyes back and forth. Probably the closest anatomical parallel I can come up with, is shivering.
Are there any biological explanations as to what may have happened? Any neurological explanation, or this may actually be quite the complex process to be addressed with a simple answer?

Thanks.
In the case of my sister and I, it's called Voluntary Nystagmus, as it never occurs involuntarily.

A 53-year-old woman has been able to produce voluntary nystagmus, also called voluntary flutter, since early childhood.
I'm not a doctor, so I have no idea what the rest of that article means.

If you're friend's Nystagmus was involuntary, then that's a different story.

ps. The only reason I do it, is to freak people out.
Psinter
#3
Jun14-14, 02:05 AM
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Quote Quote by OmCheeto View Post
If you're friend's Nystagmus was involuntary, then that's a different story.

ps. The only reason I do it, is to freak people out.
Hahaha! You are mean. ;) I wasn't freaked out, I thought it was actually cool... what happened. But I made no expression whatsoever as I don't know if she was aware and if she was and I asked something it may have made her feel bad. I don't know.

Are you sure it may be that? Because her eyes look normal. It was just in that instant that it happened. Can Nystagmus then happen for an instant and go away?

OmCheeto
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Jun14-14, 03:07 AM
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Temporary blazing fast eye movements when thinking

Quote Quote by Psinter View Post
Hahaha! You are mean. ;) I wasn't freaked out, I thought it was actually cool... what happened. But I made no expression whatsoever as I don't know if she was aware and if she was and I asked something it may have made her feel bad. I don't know.

Are you sure it may be that?
No. As I said, I'm not a doctor.
Because her eyes look normal.
My eyes look normal.
It was just in that instant that it happened. Can Nystagmus then happen for an instant and go away?
I can do it as briefly as ≈1/5 of a second, based on the NEJM article that says the frequency is 10 hz.
I can keep the twitching going continuously for maybe 3 seconds at the most. Then I have to rest for a couple of seconds.

hmmm... This is interesting:

Incidence and characteristics of voluntary nystagmus.
A survey of a college age population revealed that 8% could produce voluntary nystagmus. Seventy-nine per cent of this sample had relatives who could also produce it.
This is a lot more common than I realized.
Psinter
#5
Jun14-14, 12:06 PM
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Quote Quote by OmCheeto View Post
I can do it as briefly as ≈1/5 of a second, based on the NEJM article that says the frequency is 10 hz.
I can keep the twitching going continuously for maybe 3 seconds at the most. Then I have to rest for a couple of seconds.
Wow, that is fast.

Quote Quote by OmCheeto View Post
hmmm... This is interesting:
Incidence and characteristics of voluntary nystagmus.
A survey of a college age population revealed that 8% could produce voluntary nystagmus. Seventy-nine per cent of this sample had relatives who could also produce it.
This is a lot more common than I realized.
Thanks for that link...
Quote Quote by http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC493105/
This voluntary nystagmus-also known as voluntary ocular tremor, voluntary ocular fibrillation, and voluntary ocular oscillation-has been defined as a high frequency, low amplitude movement of the eyes...
I couldn't have described it better. The words high frequency and low amplitude describe it perfectly.
Evo
#6
Jun14-14, 03:40 PM
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I occasionally have involuntary nystagmus, it only lasts a second but it is really not a nice feeling.
OmCheeto
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Jun14-14, 04:19 PM
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Quote Quote by Evo View Post
I occasionally have involuntary nystagmus, it only lasts a second but it is really not a nice feeling.
I was going to post a hypotheses, last night, that the condition might be related to the "Rapid Eye Movement" phase of sleep, but I couldn't find a peer reviewed article.

And on top of that, it was way past my bed time...

Speaking of which...

nap time.
Ryan_m_b
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Jun14-14, 04:59 PM
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Wow I've been able to do that all my life and never knew there was a term for it! I've only ever met a few people that can also. It is great to freak people out :p
Evo
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Jun14-14, 08:04 PM
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Involuntary nystagmus, which I have, the eyes move incredibly fast, that wiki picture of the eyes moving is not representative of involuntary nystagmus. I would say my eyes move back and forth 30 or more times in half a second, very disquieting. The feeling of your eyes being pulled back and forth is horrible.
thankz
#10
Jun15-14, 06:35 PM
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does it feel as if someone else is looking through your eyes?
Evo
#11
Jun15-14, 09:33 PM
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Quote Quote by thankz View Post
does it feel as if someone else is looking through your eyes?
No. .


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