Optical coherence tomography (OCT) is a non-invasive imaging test. It uses visible light to create a 3D model of the retina (the sensory layer at the back of the eye). Unlike MRI or CT scans, OCT does not use radiation and can be used regularly without risk when assessing the eye health.
There are many eye conditions that cannot be detected with the naked eye. Standard digital retinal imaging and a slit lamp examination allow optometrists to assess the top layer of the retina. The OCT looks beyond this – it shows us the underlying layers at the back of the eye.
Conditions such as glaucoma, referred to as the “silent thief of sight” often have no symptoms in the early stages. Thus, screening and monitoring for eye health conditions is important for everyone, including those of us who see very well. At Gerry and Johnson Optometrists, we believe that early prevention and detection is important in looking after your vision and eye health.
For what eye conditions is OCT useful?
- Myopia-related retinal conditions such as
- Retinal tear
- Retinal detachment
- Myopic Maculopathy
- Age-related Macula Degeneration
- Macular hole and/or traction
- Epiretinal membrane
- Diabetic Macular oedema (fluid at the macula)
- Optic neuritis (inflammation of the optic nerve)
- Monitoring ‘freckles’ in the retina/choroid
- Choroidal melanoma
- Side effects of medications such as Plaquenil and Tamoxifen
This a small list of the many eye conditions that may be diagnosed and monitored with the OCT. Your GP may recommend an OCT with a comprehensive eye consultation if you have a health condition or take medications that may affects your eyes, or a family history of eye conditions.
Vitelliform Macular Dystrophy (Best's Disease)
Lamellar Macular Hole
Natalie Buckman is a clinical optometrist, educator, professional leader and ophthalmic medicines prescriber, who enjoys exploring the world and hitting the dance floor in her spare time.