When you book an appointment with your optician, you probably imagine they are just going to be testing your sight. While keeping track of how well your eyes can see is a very good reason to have a test, another reason is to monitor the health of your eyes. Most opticians these days have access to specialist equipment that can take an in-depth look at optic health and screen for different associated diseases. |
There are a number of tests and checks that a specialist can undertake in order to get a better picture of the physical state of your eye, as well as how well your vision is functioning. One example of the kind of technology now available is Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT). Despite its complexity, this top quality facility is now available in many high street opticians and used to take a more comprehensive look at a patient’s retina.
What Does The OCT Eye Scan Do?
Primarily, this scanning machine is used to pick up diseases that may occur without any associated symptoms. Many of these conditions can just develop slowly over time and don’t have an adverse effect on vision, therefore remaining undetected by the patient until it is too late. This technology picks up issues that may otherwise remain hidden.
What Conditions Can it Detect?
There are many potentially serious conditions that an OCT eye scan can pick up, including glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration and diabetic retinopathy. This intervention is often recommended even for people who appear to have healthy eyes and gives the optician a point of reference and a baseline image from which to detect future changes.
The images taken using the machine provide the specialist with a picture of the layers of the retina. These layers can then be mapped out and the thickness of each one measured and used to compare to future scans. The optic nerve can also be assessed and any abnormalities detected.
How Does An OCT Eye Scan Work?
This technology is very similar to an ultrasound, except the OCT eye scan uses light waves, as opposed to sound waves, to form images of the retina. The patient sits in front of a small machine and places the chin on a support. The scan is done without anything actually touching the eye. It is completely pain free and, despite the dazzle of light that might make you blink as the machine takes a picture, you won’t be able to tell you have had the procedure. Both eyes are scanned at the same time making the examination very efficient.
Scanning regularly helps your optician detect any minor changes in the thickness of the retina layers, which could be the initial warning signs of a serious condition. Early diagnosis means that treatments and management are generally more effective.
Book Your Scan
Anyone over the age of 25 is encouraged to have an OCT eye scan, and anyone at greater risk of developing certain conditions should definitely have one regardless of age. Book with your local optician and they will be happy to help.
David Paul opticians epitomise everything you want from a local eyewear specialist. Not only do they offer eye tests, they also provide an expert service that includes OCT eye scan testing, advice on buying your ultimate pair of glasses and much more. The team of experienced eyewear specialists and expert optometrists are there to make your glasses and contact lens buying experience the best it can be.
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