Retinal imaging is part of a comprehensive eye exam that reveals signs of eye diseases like retinopathy and macular degeneration before you start to experience symptoms. Board-certified ophthalmologist Dr. Steven L. Cahan uses retinal imaging at his practice in Asheville, North Carolina, to observe your eye health and provide the necessary treatments to protect your vision. If you’re due for an eye exam, call or schedule your appointment online today.
Retinal imaging is a diagnostic tool that provides a digital image of your retina. Located at the back of your eye, your retina is the area where light and images hit and are sent to your brain via the optic nerve. Damage to your retina is irreversible and if conditions like diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, or macular degeneration are left untreated, they can lead to retina damage and blindness.
Retinal imaging is a quick and painless test. Dr. Cahan uses it in combination with other tools like an ophthalmoscope to develop a comprehensive understanding of your eye health.
Dr. Cahan puts drops in your eyes to dilate your pupils to prepare you for retinal imaging. It usually takes around 20 minutes for the drops to take effect. The drops will make your vision blurry and cause sensitivity to light for about four hours, so you’ll need to wear sunglasses after your exam and have a family member or friend drive you home.
While the image is taken, you sit in a darkened treatment room and rest your chin and forehead on straps and supports to keep your face still during the imaging. You open your eyes as wide as possible and stare at an image while a laser scans the back of your eye to create the digital image. The image is uploaded to a computer so Dr. Cahan can study it in detail.
Dr. Cahan uses retinal imaging to check for retinal damage and signs of eye diseases such as:
Retinal imaging helps Dr. Cahan evaluate your eye health. If you have a very strong prescription for either nearsightedness or farsightedness, the images can indicate whether the distortion of your eye has affected your retina.
Similarly, general health conditions like high blood pressure and diabetes can damage your retina by creating excess pressure in the blood vessels in your eyes, which eventually lead to blindness.
Also, if you have a risk of developing eye conditions like macular degeneration or glaucoma, retinal imaging helps Dr. Cahan monitor your eye health and start treatments to reduce your risk of blindness.
Call or schedule an appointment online today with Dr. Cahan’s office.