Cardinal Positions of Gaze


A cardinal position of gaze is a direction of gaze where the action of a specific extraocular muscle is isolated and most apparent. There are six cardinal positions of gaze. The following matrix lists the muscles active in different cardinal positions of gaze. Note that straight up, primary gaze and straight down are not cardinal positions due to multiple muscles involved in these directions of gaze.





RE: Superior Rectus

LE: Inferior Oblique

RE: Inferior Oblique

LE: Superior Rectus


RE: Lateral Rectus

LE: Medial Rectus

RE: Medial Rectus

LE: Lateral Rectus


RE: Inferior Rectus

LE: Superior Oblique

RE: Superior Oblique

LE: Inferior Rectus

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