Importance of Standard Ophthalmic Exam in General Ophthalmology

General ophthalmology is the branch of medicine that deals with anatomy, physiology and various diseases of the eyeball. General ophthalmologists are the specialists in medical and surgical treatment of eye diseases or problems and they provide a broad spectrum of complete General Ophthalmology Surgery and eye care which ranges from vision care to diagnosing and treating various diseases of the eye. They also perform comprehensive examinations of the eye and surgical evaluations. Standard ophthalmic exam plays an important role in the General Ophthalmology Surgery and Care services. It is comprehensive series of tests which are done by the ophthalmologist and they tests are intended to check your vision and eyes health.

Let’s see the importance of standard ophthalmic exam, its preparation, procedure and results:

What is the purpose of standard ophthalmic exam?

According to Mayo Clinic, children should undergo first eye exam between three to five years of age and their eyes should be examined before they begin their first grade. Children should continue to get the eye exams every 1-2 years. Adults with no problem of vision should get eye exams every five to ten years. Adults, at the beginning of their 40s, should get ophthalmic exam every two to four years. After the age of 65, the adults should get eye exams once in a year or more often if they have any vision problems or are at high risk of developing any eye disease or problem. Those, who already experiencing any eye disorder should check for frequency of eye exam as recommended by their eye doctors.   

We are greatly dependent on our vision and without a healthy vision; we are unable to properly do our daily routine activities. There are a lot of health conditions that can affect our eyesight, such as diabetes or high blood pressure. Secondly, if you have a family member with an eye disease then you are also likely to develop that disorder as well. There are various types of eye diseases that are difficult to detect at early stage and we may often unnoticed them as no symptoms appear at early stages but these diseases can even cause vision loss or blindness at their advanced stages. That is why it is so much important that you should get regular ophthalmic exam as prescribed above. Only early detection through an eye exam and a proper treatment can prevent the vision loss.

How to prepare for standard ophthalmic exam?

There is no special preparation needed before the exam but after the test, you may need someone to drive you to home if your vision has not returned to normal yet due to dilation of your eyes. Make sure to bring sunglasses because your eyes, after dilation, may become light-sensitive, so you need to wear them. In case if you don’t have sunglasses then the doctor can provide you for your eye protection.

What happens during standard ophthalmic exam?

At first, the eye doctor takes your complete eye history which includes your vision problems, corrective methods you are using (e.g. contact lenses or glasses), your overall health and family history and any medication that you are currently taking.

The doctor starts with a refraction test to check your vision problems and it helps to determine any difficulty with your vision. During a refraction test, you will be asked to look through a device by using different lenses at the eye chart that is 20 feet away.

The doctor also dilates your eyes with eye drops so that your pupils become large and it helps him/her to view the back of your eye. Some other parts of eye exam may include:

  • To check your three-dimensional vision (stereopsis)
  • To check your peripheral vision (side vision outside of direct focus)
  • To check the health of the muscles of eye

Some other tests are also performed by the eye doctor, which includes:

  1. Examination of pupils (black circular opening in iris) with a light to check whether they respond properly.
  2. Examination of retina (light-sensitive tissue layer lining back of eye and located near optic nerve) with lighted magnifying lens to check health of blood vessels and optic nerve.
  3. A slit lamp test, in which a lighted magnifying device is used to check the eyelid, cornea (clear & protective layer covering iris), conjunctiva (thin membrane covering only white part of eye) and iris (colored part of eye).
  4. Tonometry is a test used to detect an eye condition, called as Glaucoma. During the test, painless puff of air blows at the eye that helps to measure the pressure of fluid inside the eye.
  5. Color-blindness test in which you are asked to look at multicolored dots with symbols, numbers or shapes in them.

What do results of standard ophthalmic exam mean?

Normal results mean that the doctor didn’t detect any abnormality during your General Ophthalmology exam. These results indicate that you have 20/20 vision, you can differentiate colors and you have no sign of Glaucoma or any other abnormality with your retina, optic nerve and eye muscles or any other eye disease or condition.

Abnormal results mean that the doctor detected the eye condition or problem that may need treatment and these conditions include:

  • Vision impairment: It is a problem in which corrective eyeglasses or contact lenses are required.
  • Astigmatism: It is a condition that causes blurry vision due to shape of the cornea.
  • Blocked tear duct: A blockage of the system that is responsible to carry away the tears and cause excess tearing.  
  • Lazy eye: A condition in which eyes and brain do not properly work together and it is common in children.
  • Strabismus: A condition in which the eyes don’t align properly and it is also common in children.
  • Infection and trauma

The standard ophthalmic exam may reveal some more serious conditions of the eye, which include:

  • Cataract: It is common in elderly people and cause clouding of natural eye lens resulting in blurry vision.
  • Age-related macular degeneration (ARMD): It is another serious condition that damages the retina which makes it difficult to see the details.
  • Corneal abrasion: There is a scratch on the cornea that causes discomfort and blurry vision.
  • Other complications include damaged blood vessels, diabetic-related eye diseases such as diabetic retinopathy or glaucoma.
For more information about standard ophthalmic exam, visit Menger Eye Centers in NYC:

The board certified ophthalmologists and optometrists at Menger Eye Centers provide complete General Ophthalmology Care Services in NYC and perform the standard ophthalmic exam with advanced and modern facilities. If the results of the exam are abnormal then they tailor a complete treatment plan according to the detected disease and needs of the patient so that they can give best results by applying their medical and surgical eye care expertise. For a standard ophthalmic exam or if you or your loved one experiences any eye problem then you can visit our website or book an appointment by filling contact form or call us for an immediate help.

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