What is a Slit Lamp Exam?
A slit lamp has an opening that allows it to shine a thin “sheet” of light into the eye. The brightness of the light can be adjusted so that the examining doctor either sees the front part of the eye or all the way to the back, where the retina sits. At Powers Eye Center, our optometrist uses this method to check for any abnormalities or problems to diagnose any eye conditions.
How Does This Exam Work?
When you get a slit lamp exam, you are seated in front of the lamp with your chin and forehead rested on supports. The supports help you keep your head steady as the doctor examines your eyes.
The entirety of your eyes is examined during this test. Your eyelids, iris, sclera, conjunctiva, and cornea are given special attention as the front parts of your eyes are checked. If your retina and other deep eye structures are to be examined, you’ll be given eye drops to dilate your pupils. Another small lens will be used along with the slit lamp to provide the doctor with the needed magnification.
In some cases, you’ll also be given eye drops that add a slight tint to your cornea. This allows its shape and structure to be seen more easily. The dye is temporary, and it will wash away with your normal tears and blinking.
What can be Detected Using the Slit Lamp Exam?
Many eye problems can be spotted with this exam, which is why it is a standard part of a general eye examination. Dry eye, conjunctivitis, retinal detachment, cornea injuries, macular degeneration, cataracts, and many more issues are detectable. Since some of these conditions are sight-threatening, it is important that this exam be part of your eye checkup. An exam that only tests your visual acuity cannot detect the vast majority of eye diseases.
Contact Our Local Eye Doctor for a Slit Lamp Exam Today
To get a proper eye checkup including a slit lamp exam, just make an appointment with us here at Powers Eye Center at (719)598-5068 in Colorado Springs.