Medical interview and preliminary procedures: For initial visit, you will be asked to complete several forms including your medical and ocular history. Ophthalmic technician will then escort you to an examination room to prepare you for the retinal examination. Questions regarding your visual symptoms will be asked. Your visual acuity will be taken with an eye chart. After receiving anesthetic eye drops, your eye pressure will be taken. A second set of eye drops will then be given to dilate your eyes. Dilation is necessary for a complete examination of the inside of your eyes. During the dilating the time, you are welcome to review some of the educational materials provided in the waiting area. Since your eyes will remain dilated several hours, you are recommended to bring sunglasses to reduce your sensitivity to light. You are also recommended to bring a driver since your vision may be affected by the dilation, especially upclose.
Your doctor will review all the medical information in your record and ask you pertinent questions. He or she will then use different types of ophthalmic equipment with bright lights to examine your eye. In some cases, further special testing may be necessary to determine your diagnosis and treatment.
Fundus Photographs: Color photographs of your retina are taken with a special camera to document and follow your retina condition.
Fluorescein Angiography: This is a special photographic test to visualize retinal structures, especially the tiny retinal blood vessels. An orange dye called Fluorescein is first injected into a blood vessel in your arm and a rapid series of photographs are taken through special filters. Digital black and white pictures are developed immediately for viewing. The doctor will review the picture with you to detect and illustrate abnormalities in the retina. This test helps visualize pathology that is otherwise difficult to detect.
Optical Coherence Tomogram: OCT is a new technology based on infrared light and interferometry principle to obtain a cross sectional view of your retina. This noninvasive technique shows a detailed view of the tissue layers of the retina to detect and measure pathology and its progression in a manner which had not been possible in the past. This technology has helped detect many subtle diseases that are difficult to detect.
Visual Field: This test can detect abnormal blind spots in your central or peripheral vision either due to retinal or optic nerve abnormalities. In this test, you are seated in front of a dome shaped machine that shows a tiny light spot in different areas of your vision to identify areas of visual defect.
Ultrasonography: This test is used when there is an opacity in the eye that prevents visualization of the retina. Sound waves are used to form a picture of the back of your eye to detect conditions such as retinal detachment or tumor.
Office and Hospital Procedures
Your doctor will discuss with you if any of the following procedures are required to treat your eye condition.
Laser: Laser is used to treat common retinal diseases such as diabetic retinopathy, retinal tear, and macular degeneration. Laser uses a focused beam of light to create controlled microscopic burns to the retina to achieve its effect. In most instances, only topical anesthetic drops are needed for the laser.
Intravitreal injection: Several retinal conditions may benefit from eye injections. For example, macular degeneration may benefit from injection of anti-vascular growth factor agents such as Eylea, Lucentis and Avastin. Macular edema may benefit from injection of corticosteroid drugs such as Kenalog.
Surgery: Surgery is indicated for vision threatening conditions such as retinal detachment, vitreous hemorrhage, diabetic retinopathy, epiretinal membrane, macular hole, and intraocular foreign body. Pars plana vitrectomy and scleral buckling procedures are two of the most commonly performed procedures.
Call 702-732-4500 today to schedule your appointment with our retina specialists.