Ask the Optician: What is digital retinal photography?


ALL EIGHT of our Spanish Specsavers Opticas stores now have digital retinal cameras, one of the latest pieces of technology being used by forward thinking opticians.

This is great news for patients, but we realised that not many people knew about the technology and what it can do, so here we’ll be answering your questions.

Q: Why is digital retinal photography important?
A: It is becoming an increasingly valued part of eye examinations because, far more than just testing your sight, optometrists can in fact make a comprehensive health assessment by using retinal photography alongside more conventional procedures and it is a fantastic tool in safeguarding sight.

Q: What does it do?
A: This sophisticated process uses a camera to take a picture of the back of the eye – the only part of the human body where the microcirculation of blood can be observed directly. The state-of-the-art technology helps to identify changes that might be associated with certain eye conditions such as diabetic changes, hypertensive retinopathy, macular degeneration, optic nerve disease and retinal holes or thinning. The ability to save images creates a lasting record for ongoing monitoring. If necessary the optician can refer patients directly for further medical examination to their hospital or general practitioner.

Q: Can it really identify healthproblems too?
A: In addition to helping opticians identify sight-related problems, digital retinal photography can also highlight the signs of a range of other conditions, including diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, risk of a stroke and symptoms associated with brain tumours. This allows patients to seek medical help before symptoms become noticeable in many cases.

There are five Specsavers Opticas stores on the Costa Blanca, in Javea, Calpe, Benidorm,
Torrevieja and Guardamar.

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