An eye test can tell you so much more than simply whether you need glasses
By undertheedge | Tuesday, September 10, 2013, 10:54
Norville Opticians which has practices across South Gloucestershire and Gloucestershire is to mark National Eye Health Week next week (16–22 September) by reminding everyone of the benefits of having regular eye examinations.
Norville Opticians Daniel Read obtains cross-section pictures of a patient’s eyes using Optical Coherence Tomography to check for possible early signs of several serious conditions.
The week aims to raise awareness of the importance of eye health and the need for everyone to have sight checks every two years to look after their eyes.
The reminder is especially timely following the publication of research in America which indicates that studying the blood vessels at the back of the eye could show whether a person is likely to suffer a stroke.
Norville Opticians Director Adrian Street says that the retina, the light sensitive area at the back of the eye and equivalent to the film in a camera or CCD in a digital camera, can tell us much about the state of the blood vessels in the brain.
He said: "In addition to the American research the retina can also be damaged by many common diseases like glaucoma, diabetes and age related macular degeneration which can lead to visual impairment or even blindness.
He explained: "Norville Opticians now has technology which was previously only available in hospitals to monitor and record what is happening in the eye.
"By taking regular pictures with one of our Optical Coherence Tomography cameras it is possible to build up a 3D image of the various layers inside an eye and if repeated over a period of time the scans can give a vital early warning of several serious conditions before they become apparent to the patient."
Adrian Street continued with another reason why regular eye tests are valuable.
He said: "Another type of eye examination can diagnose many eyesight related reading problems in children and adults and treat them with coloured lenses in spectacles.
"The technique is called Intuitive Colorimetry which can be used if a person's reading ability is being affected by visual stress (sensitivity to some patterns; particularly stripes). In some this can cause visual perception problems leading to problems with reading.
He ended by saying: "We can now do so much more than just prescribe spectacles; we can monitor a patient's health and detect problems at a much earlier stage and help with reading difficulties.
"With facts like that it makes sense to have your eyes checked regularly."