Optical Coherence Tomography
3D OCT screening can detect potentially serious conditions that can affect your eyesight and overall health.
Ocular Coherence Tomography is an advanced eye scan for people of all ages. Similar to ultrasound, OCT uses light rather than sound waves to reveal the many layers that make up the back of the eye. This particular 3D OCT unit captures a digital photograph of the inner surface of the eye at the same time, so that areas of concern identified by the scan, can be cross referenced with the classic view of the back of the eye that we see.
In other words, if you are looking at an iced cake before it has been sliced, you don’t know if it contains jam, cream or chocolate layers; equally if it’s lumpy or smooth. With this unique NON-INVASIVE technology we are able to see both the surface of the back of your eye (the top of the cake) and a three dimensional image of the layers that are beneath the surface.
Never before has it been easier to locate and identify eye conditions that affect the layers below the surface. We can review the images on a PC screen and pin point areas of concern.
Using the 3D OCT Triton we can more confidently diagnose, manage or refer you to an ophthalmologist for further treatment, should this be required. For the majority of patients, OCT provides significant reassurance that the deeper layers of their eyes are healthy.
We can now provide this state of the art diagnostic tool with your eye test. There is a small additional charge for the OCT scan, but the benefits are obvious; you can enjoy the peace of mind that comes from knowing that your eyes are in great condition.
What can the scan check for?
Common conditions identified throughregular OCT screening include:
Age-related macular degeneration
Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of blindness in the UK. It causes gradual deterioration of the macula (the central portion of your retina which enables detailed vision). There are two types of AMD; dry and wet. Wet AMD causes rapid reduction in vision and must be treated in hospital very rapidly. OCT can help to identify the earliest signs of AMD, determine whether it is the dry or wet form and help monitor its progress over time.
Over 4 million people are now diagnosed with diabetes in the UK, with experts claiming that over half a million people are currently suffering from undiagnosed type 2 diabetes.Diabetic retinopathy is the leading cause of blindness in people of working age within the UK. OCT examination helps enable early detection of diabetic retinopathy, allowing early referral and management which can greatly improve the success rate of treatment.
Glaucoma is a condition which causes damage to the optic nerve – the part of the eye which connects to the brain – and causes gradual loss in peripheral vision. Recent statistics suggest that some form of glaucoma affects around two in every 100 people over the age of 40, rising to almost 1 in 10 in people over 75 years. Because the early stages of chronic glaucoma do not cause symptoms, regular eye examinations are essential to pick up glaucoma at its earliest stage so that ongoing damage can be prevented. OCT examination can measure numerous features at the back of the eye and facilitate early diagnosis of glaucoma. Furthermore, it can enable close monitoring of your eye health year-on-year, allowing identification of glaucomatous changes over time.
Vitreomacular traction can be easily diagnosed through OCT providing invaluable information about the current relationship between the vitreous and the retinal surface of the eye. As people get older the vitreous jelly that takes up the space in our eyeball can change. It becomes less firm and can move away from the back of the eye towards the centre, in some cases parts do not detach and cause ‘pulling’ of the retinal surface. The danger of a vitreous detachment is that there is no pain and your eyesight will seem unchanged but the back of your eye may be being damaged.
A macular hole is a small hole in the macula – the part of the retina which is responsible for our sharp, detailed central vision. This is the vision we use when looking directly at things, when reading, sewing or using a computer for example. Macular holes usually form during a complicated vitreous detachment, when the vitreous pulls away from the back of the eye, causing a hole to form. Management of this condition needs to be carried out by an ophthalmologist in hospital.