“Why am I having a Dilated Eye Exam?”

You are scheduled to return to The Family Eye Care Center to have a dilated exam of your eyes. A dilated exam involves the following: Dilating drops are administered to one or both eyes. After the drops take effect, your pupils will enlarge. A dilated pupil allows the eye doctor to easily see into the back of your eye. Structures such as the lens, retina, blood vessels and optic nerve are now clearly seen. Examining these structures helps the Doctor assess the health of your eye. Certain eye diseases or conditions can cause changes in your eye; therefore, getting a clear view through a dilated pupil is extremely important.  Temporary effects of dilating drops included increased sensitivity to light and blurred vision, particularly at near. 

Usually available at The Family Eye Care Center are reversing drops. When the doctor is through with the dilated fundus exam these drops can be administered to reduce the amount of time it will take for your pupil size to go back to normal. Still, you may feel uncomfortable driving for a while so we suggest having someone with you to drive home.

“Why am I having a Visual Field Test?”

You are scheduled to return to The Family Eye Care Center to have a visual field test. A visual field exam (CPT-4 92083) is performed in order to determine if there are any defects in a person’s peripheral or central vision. The test is performed when the doctor is concerned about conditions such as glaucoma, strokes, retinal problems, circulatory issues and optic nerve conditions. You will sit in front of a machine and look into a ‘bowl-like’ structure. Lights flash. Each time you are able to see the light you will click a button. Taking this test is similar to playing a slow-paced video game. One eye is tested at a time. The test takes approximately 5 minutes per eye.  A doctor will interpret the results of the test and notify you of the results.

“Why am I having a Pressure Check?”

You are scheduled to return to The Family Eye Care Center for a pressure check of your eyes. The doctor wants to check the pressure of your eye because having a “high eye pressure” can be an indication that you may have a painless, insidious vision threatening condition known as glaucoma. It is imperative to diagnose glaucoma as early as possible to prevent vision loss. During your visit to the office for a pressure check, your eyes will be numbed with numbing drops. Then the pressure of each eye is measured at the slit lamp using a blue light (Goldmann tonometry).  The numbing drops will wear off in roughly 10 minutes.

“Why am I having an Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) Test?”

You are scheduled to return to The Family Eye Care Center to have an OCT (Optical Coherence Tomography) (CPT-4 92135) test. This test utilizes highly advanced technology in order to study various structures in the back of the eye such as the optic nerve and retina. Using properties of light, this testing is essentially able to “biopsy” eye tissue non-invasively. This revolutionary technology enables the Eye Doctor to diagnose many conditions such as glaucoma and various retina conditions much earlier and more definitively. The test is easily performed in the doctor’s office and takes roughly 5 minutes per eye. Dilating drops are sometimes needed in order to allow for a more thorough scan.

“Why am I having an A-Scan?”

You are scheduled to return to The Family Eye Care Center to have an A-Scan (CPT-4 76519) of your eye. This test is performed on all patients scheduled to undergo cataract surgery. Using ultrasound, the length of a person’s eye is measured. This information is critical in order to determine what power lens is needed to be inserted during surgery after the cataract has been removed. The entire process takes approximately 10 minutes per eye.

“Why am I coming back for an Additional Exam?”

If you are scheduled to return to The Family Eye Care Center for an EP Exam (existing patient exam) it is because the Doctor feels additional components of your eye health and vision need to be evaluated. The examination will include evaluating visual acuity, eye muscles, pupillary function, peripheral vision and the internal and external health of your eyes. You may need to have your eyes dilated. Therefore, if you are uncomfortable driving with dilated eyes you should arrange to have someone with you to be a designated driver.

“What is a Contact Lens Refit?”

It has been determined that your contact lenses will need to be changed. The Doctor will be ordering a more suitable type of contact lens for your particular eye shape and eye health needs. This will ensure healthy contact lens wear in the future. Sometimes contacts need to be refit even if they are seemingly comfortable. Reasons for this include: the contacts may be causing irritation to the external eye tissue, the contacts may not be allowing enough oxygen to get to the cornea, or lastly the brand of contact lenses that you are wearing may not be giving you the best possible vision or may be discontinued.

“Why am I scheduled for a Contact Lens Evaluation?”

In order to have a valid contact lens prescription, one must have his or her contacts evaluated yearly. The Doctor will make sure that the external tissues of your eyes are healthy, your cornea is healthy and that your lenses are the most appropriate power, material and size for your eyes. The Doctor will also recommend the proper wearing schedule and contact lens solution for your particular contacts.

“Why am I scheduled for a Contact Lens Check?”

The Doctor has recommended that you return for a contact lens check-up. This is simply to ensure that your contacts are providing you with the best vision, health and comfort before finalizing your prescription. The Doctor will be writing you a prescription for contacts after determining if any changes need to be made.

“Why am I scheduled to come back for Punctal Plugs?”

Your Doctor has recommended you return to the Family Eye Care Center to have Punctal Plugs inserted on one or both eyes. Punctal plugs are tiny silicone or collagen inserts used to block the tear duct drainage system and relieve ‘dry eye’ symptoms. The Doctor recommends this procedure to improve ocular comfort and clarity of vision. The drainage system normally carries tears away from the eye into the nose. When inserted into the tear duct opening, these plugs increase the tear film available to the eye. The insertion of the Punctal plugs is quick and painless. It is also a reversible procedure. Other forms of ‘dry eye’ treatment may accompany this procedure based on the severity of symptoms.

“Why am I scheduled to return for Fundus Photographs?”

Fundus photographs are visual records that document the appearance of the vitreous, the optic nerve, the retina and its blood vessels. The Doctor can use these images to help identify and monitor a wide variety of ophthalmic conditions. The camera itself is a medical imaging device that uses high-powered lenses to view the back of the eye by focusing through the cornea, pupil, and lens. Depending on which camera is used, drops may be used to dilate the pupils prior to taking the photograph.  The digital photograph generated will allow the doctor to study the patient’s retina, to identify retinal changes over time and to diagnose certain eye conditions.