Glaucoma is a serious eye disease that affects the optic nerve. It is the leading cause of blindness for people over 60 years old, but the condition can often be prevented with early treatment. There are a range of accurate tests that can be used to diagnose glaucoma.
Let’s talk about the 9 most accurate tests for glaucoma and where you can go for the treatment of glaucoma in Washington, MO.
How A Comprehensive Eye Exam Can Help
The only way to accurately diagnose glaucoma is with a comprehensive eye exam along with some specific tests, which usually take no more than 45 to 90 minutes. An ophthalmologist will assess your medical history (vision, general health, and family medical history) and carry out several tests to assess your vision and eye health.
Tests may include:
- Visual acuity test–this uses eye charts to determine how well you see at various distances.
- Assessing how well the pupils respond to light (if pupils widen or don’t respond, it may reveal an underlying problem).
- Eye movement – to check eye muscles are working properly.
- Slit-lamp exam to check the front part of the eye (cornea, iris, lens, and eyelids). The test uses a special slit-lamp microscope to check for cataracts and other signs of damage, such as scars or scratches.
- A prescription for corrective lenses – which help determines the best eyeglass or contact lens prescription for your vision needs.
To screen for glaucoma, an ophthalmologist may also perform several other tests, including:
- Perimetry (visual field test) to determine if there are areas of vision loss or blind spots (scotomas) in your vision. If there is a loss of peripheral vision (side vision), this can be a sign of glaucoma.
- Dilated eye exam to check the retina and optic nerve for damage. Special eye drops are used to cause the pupils to dilate, allowing the retina and optic nerve to be examined for signs of damage from the disease.
- Gonioscopy – an inspection of the eye’s drainage angle. If the drainage angle that enables fluid inside the eye to drain is blocked or closed, it can be a sign of glaucoma.
- Tonometry test to measure intraocular pressure (the pressure within the eye). Elevated intraocular pressure can be an indicator of glaucoma. The test involveseither a quick puff of air onto the eye or gently applying a pressure-sensitive tip near or against the eye.
- Corneal pachymetry – to measure the thickness of the eye’s cornea and the structures within the cornea. Corneal thickness can change the measurement of intraocular pressure.
- Optical coherence tomography (OCT) test to look for changes in the optic nerve. It uses a low-powered laser to generatecross-sectional images of the retina and optic nerve.
- Fundus photography involves taking an image of the retina at the back of the eye using a specialized camera.
- Corneal topography – a special photography technique that maps the surface of the cornea.
- Fluorescein angiography (FA) – uses a specialized camera to take pictures of the retina, blood vessels, and other structures in the back of the eye.
Comprehensive eye exams,tests, and specialized imaging techniques help the ophthalmologist detect problems in the back of the eye, inside the eye, or on the eye’s surface and diagnose diseases early.
Glaucoma is usually managed with medicated eye drops or medicines; however, laser surgery or conventional surgery may be recommended to slow down vision loss by improving fluid drainage from the eye.
Glaucoma Test in Washington, MO
If you are at higher risk of glaucoma and are interested in finding out about glaucoma testing, visit Advanced Sight Center in Washington. Our board-certified ophthalmologists offer a comprehensive range of eye care to monitor your eye health and prevent vision loss.
We use innovative diagnostic examinations to pinpoint eye diseases, such as glaucoma, at their earliest stages, and we provide a variety of effective treatments to preserve your vision.