OCT Eye Scan Test Procedure and Its Benefits

OCT Eye Scan Test Procedure and Its Benefits

May 01, 2021

Ocular Coherence Tomography (OCT) is a high-resolution 3D retinal imaging that offers in-depth eye testing. This scan uses light to look through the layers of the retina, allowing the optometrist to see changes that occur beneath the surface of the retina. Retinal photographs are included in OCT scans. They enable the eye expert to view a large area of the retina in one image. The Ocular Coherence Tomography scan in Mississauga, ON, is done alongside a routine eye examination for better diagnosis and treatment.

Advantages of OCT Eye Test

  • This test gives an accurate permanent record of the back of the eye, making the comparison in subsequent eye examinations possible and helps track changes and improvements taking place over time.
  • The images enable the optometrist to understand what is normal for your eyes.
  • Signs of retinal eye conditions can be detected earlier than when using standard eye examination techniques.
  • It is a non-invasive, simple, and pain-free procedure.
  • The results are immediate and easy to interpret.
  • Eye health issues that have no symptoms in their early stages can be diagnosed through an OCT eye scan. Among these are macular degeneration, glaucoma, and diabetes.

Retinal Diseases Identified Through OCT Eye Scan

  • Diabetic eye disease

Diabetic retinopathy can be detected early through an OCT exam. This is a condition whereby the blood vessels in the retina are damaged. It can cause a loss of sight if not controlled. Early detection increases the eye treatment’s rate of success.

  • Glaucoma

Glaucoma is a disease that damages the optic nerve in the retina. Fluid builds up at the optic nerve and may cause blindness over time. OCT eye scan identifies glaucoma in the patient and the exact stage it has progressed to.

  • Age-related macular degeneration

The macula is a small area at the center of the retina which provides a sharp central vision that enables a person to see objects clearly. Macular degeneration is the deterioration of the macula. It is a condition found in patients older than 45 years. An OCT scan helps the optometrist see if the patient’s retinal layers are distorted. A further test to detect age-related macular degeneration called fluorescein angiography is carried out. A dye injected through an IV line into the vein enables the specialist to see vessels that leak blood into the macula. This blood causes swelling, thinning, or thickening in some areas of the retina. Retinal imaging helps the optometrist identify the disease, its specific type and monitor the progress during treatment.

Types of Age-Related Macular Disorder

  • Neovascular AMD. This disorder develops when the macula is scarred and damaged due to blood leakage from blood vessels that grow underneath the retina. It causes rapid loss of vision. It is also referred to as Wet age-related macular degeneration.
  • Geographic Atrophy (Dry AMD). It occurs when drusen (yellow protein deposits) form behind the retina and move the macula from its normal position in the eye. This leads to the deterioration of cells that are sensitive to light in the macula. It progresses slowly.

Symptoms of Age-Related Macular Disorder

  • Dark, blurry areas that appear in the center of the patient’s vision
  • Change in color perception.

OCT Eye Scan Test Procedure

The optometrist at Complete Eyecare will answer all the patient’s questions concerning the health of their eyes and the OCT Eye Test. This will prepare them for the actual test and ease their fears.

The specialist puts special drops in the patient’s eyes 20 minutes before the scan to dilate them and make the pupil wider.

The patient is directed to sit in front of the OCT machine and place the forehead and chin on a support on the imaging device. This ensures that the head remains steady during the procedure.

The patient stares at an object directly ahead while laser beams pass through the eyes and takes cross-section pictures of the retina. The equipment scans the eye for 5-10 minutes without touching it.

For patients who the optometrist think may have wet macular degeneration, the procedure is slightly different. The specialist places an IV needle in the patient’s arm to inject a dye that enters the eye. It highlights the blood vessels in the patient’s eye for the picture to be taken. This test is known as a fluorescein angiogram.

These images are then uploaded to a computer so that the optometrist can look at them with precision and discuss them with the patient.

The treatment plan is determined by the results of the OCT Scan and retinal photographs.

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