We are excited to announce that OCT is coming to The Public Spectacle!
Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) is a non-invasive diagnostic instrument used for imaging the retina. It has the ability to detect problems in the eye prior to any symptoms being present in the patient.
This technology will enable us to obtain sub-surface images of eye tissues at a resolution equivalent to that of a low-power microscope. It provides imagery at much higher resolution (better than 10 μm) than other imaging techniques such as MRI or ultrasound. Importantly, it offers instant, direct imaging of tissues with no ionizing radiation.
This instrument will let us detect the early onset of a variety of eye conditions and diseases, in particular macular degeneration, glaucoma, and diabetic retinopathy (the top three diseases known to cause blindness). Using an OCT allows for early treatment in patients and dramatically improves the success of these treatments, especially in diseases that progress rapidly, such as wet macular degeneration.
The images this new technology provides have revolutionized ocular diagnosis and are already guiding treatments for ocular disease.
Since its introduction in the 1990’s, OCT had been the province of hospitals and large clinics, but recent developments in the industry have brought this advanced technology within reach of the individual optometric practice. Now, we no longer have to wait for signs of disease to send the patient to a clinic, we can make scans a routine part of every exam and thereby catch problems before symptoms manifest themselves. (Much as we do with pressure screening for glaucoma.)
With the latest technology, fast noninvasive testing, and no deleterious effects becoming part of the standard exam, we all benefit.
(By way of example, Dr. Ormes had her first OCT scan done in 2018 and discovered that she likely has two corresponding holes in her retinas, neither of which had been identified at any of her many dilated retinal exams. Fortunately, nothing requires treatment.)
We will incorporate OCT into the standard exam for the nominal fee of $25.00 (to allow us to recover the cost of the equipment).