Welcome to Southside Medical Center in Atlanta, GA, where we offer a comprehensive range of professional eye exams tailored to your needs. At our practice, eye testing is a passion of ours. It goes hand-in-hand with our desire to deliver the most accuracy and peace of mind to our patients, from diagnosis through to the end of the treatment. When you visit us, you can expect a wide array of specialized eye exams designed to address various conditions.
Eye testing is endlessly important for everyone, healthy or not, young or old. Even if you feel that your eye health is perfect, getting a second opinion from a qualified, trustworthy professional like our top optometrist Katerin Ortiz OD FAAO has infinite value. Once you lose your vision, it won’t be coming back, and scheduling consistent eye exams will minimize your risk of developing diseases or vision problems. If you’re proactive enough, you can even stop diseases in their tracks!
What Types of Eye Exams Are Available to Me?
Routine Eye Testing
Our routine exams are carefully formulated for thorough and accurate diagnoses. We conduct peripheral tests to evaluate your side vision, which is crucial for detecting any abnormalities or potential visual field defects. We administer color blindness tests to determine your ability to perceive and distinguish colors accurately. To assess your range of vision, we employ clarity tests that gauge your ability to recognize objects at varying distances. We perform pupil dilation to thoroughly examine the optic nerve and retina.
We also use slit lamp tests to examine the anterior and posterior segments of your eyes in detail. This allows us to evaluate the health of your cornea, lens, iris, and retina. Pupillary reaction tests are employed to assess the response of your pupils to light stimuli to determine the integrity of the pupil’s nerves and muscles. To determine your visual acuity, we employ specialized tests that measure your ability to discern letters or symbols at different distances.
Comprehensive Eye Testing
The purpose of comprehensive testing is to cast a wide net in order to determine the presence of a myriad of possible ailments. This goes more in-depth than a routine exam, as we use a comprehensive exam to perform a series of additional tests that will reveal the presence of eye-related diseases. This includes assessments for cataracts, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, macular degeneration, and other ocular disorders. For example, a tonometry test measures your eye’s pressure levels to diagnose glaucoma.
Throughout the eye testing examination, you can expect a series of tests and evaluations. Some of them may sound similar to our routine exams, such as visual acuity tests and eye movement/coordination evaluations. Our team will also thoroughly examine the external and internal structures of your eyes using advanced techniques such as biomicroscopy and ophthalmoscopy. These evaluations allow us to assess the health of your cornea, lens, iris, retina, and optic nerve.
Contact Lens Eye Testing
During this evaluation, our focus is to assess your suitability for contact lenses, as well as provide you with personalized recommendations that will offer you the best results. We start with a thorough examination of your eye health, including a detailed assessment of the cornea, conjunctiva, and tear film. This evaluation helps us determine the overall condition of your eyes and identify any potential factors that may affect the fit and comfort of contact lenses.
We’ll measure the curvature of your cornea using specialized instruments called keratometers or corneal topographers to ensure your prescribed lenses fit your eyes properly. Additionally, we assess your visual acuity with contact lenses, ensuring that your prescription lenses provide clear and comfortable vision. We also evaluate your tear production and quality to ensure sufficient moisture for comfortable lens wear.
Cataracts and Glaucoma
During a cataract exam, we perform a thorough assessment of your eye structures, paying close attention to the lens and its clarity in diagnosing cataracts. We employ advanced imaging technology to evaluate the extent of the clouding and opacity within the lens, allowing us to determine the severity of the cataract and plan appropriate treatment.
In the case of glaucoma, we employ various tests to measure intraocular pressure, such as tonometry. This evaluation is crucial as increased pressure can damage the optic nerve and lead to vision loss. Additionally, we assess the drainage angle of the eye using a technique called gonioscopy, enabling us to determine the type and severity of glaucoma.
What Causes Them?
Glaucoma is typically caused by increased pressure within the eye, known as intraocular pressure. This elevated pressure can damage the optic nerve over time, leading to gradual vision loss. The optic nerve is responsible for transmitting visual information from the eye to the brain. The most common type of glaucoma, called primary open-angle glaucoma, occurs when the eye’s drainage system becomes inefficient, leading to a buildup of fluid and increased pressure.
Cataracts, on the other hand, develop when the normally clear lens of the eye becomes cloudy. This cloudiness occurs due to the accumulation of proteins within the lens, which interfere with the passage of light. Cataracts can cause blurry vision, difficulties with night vision, and a general decline in visual clarity. They often develop with age but can also result from factors such as genetics, injury, or certain medical conditions like diabetes.
During the exam, we’ll use optical coherence tomography to capture detailed cross-sectional images of the retina. This allows us to assess the thickness and integrity of retinal layers, identifying any abnormalities or signs of retinopathy. Additionally, we perform a thorough examination of the blood vessels within the retina.
We will employ fluorescein angiography, where a special dye is injected into your arm, and photographs are taken as the dye travels through the blood vessels in the retina. This helps us identify areas of leakage, abnormal blood vessel growth, or other signs of retinopathy. Furthermore, we evaluate your visual acuity to assess any changes in your ability to see clearly. We may also conduct visual field tests to detect peripheral vision loss, a possible indicator of retinopathy progression.
What Causes It?
Diabetic retinopathy develops as a result of long-term high blood sugar levels that affect the blood vessels nourishing the retina. Over time, these elevated blood sugar levels can negatively impact the tiny blood vessels, leading to various negative changes in the retina. In early-stage diabetic retinopathy, called non-proliferative retinopathy, the blood vessels may weaken and leak fluid, leading to irritation and the formation of deposits called exudates.
This condition can cause abnormal blood vessels to grow on the retina’s surface. If left untreated, non-proliferative diabetic retinopathy can advance into a more serious condition called proliferative diabetic retinopathy. With this ailment, the blood vessels that were damaged will now prompt the growth of new, fragile blood vessels that are prone to leaking. This can further your vision impairment and potentially result in severe complications such as retinal detachment or glaucoma.
Dry Eye Syndrome
This eye exam focuses on the quality and quantity of your tears. We will perform a tear osmolarity test to measure the salt concentration in your tears, as elevated levels can indicate dry eye syndrome. Additionally, we can use specialized dyes, such as fluorescein and lissamine green, to assess the integrity of the tear film and identify any areas of dryness or damage on the ocular surface.
We will also evaluate the functioning of your meibomian glands, which are responsible for producing the oily layer of tears that helps prevent evaporation. Leaving no stone unturned, we will also assess your medical history and genetic predisposition to identify any and all potential underlying causes or contributing factors to your dry eye syndrome.
Pink Eye and Ocular Injury
For pink eye, we’ll need to pay special attention to the conjunctiva, the clear tissue covering the front of your eyes. We look for signs of inflammation, such as redness, swelling, and discharge, which are common indicators of pink eye. This condition can be caused by a virus, bacteria, or an allergic reaction, so this testing will also include a thorough assessment of your medical history and the conditions you may be genetically prone to.
For ocular injuries, we conduct a detailed examination of the affected eye. We evaluate the extent of the injury, assessing for any foreign bodies, scratches, or trauma. By using specialized instruments and techniques, we can identify the nature and severity of the injury, ensuring appropriate treatment planning.
Your Vision, Our Priority
We take pride in employing advanced technology and the latest medical practices to deliver accurate and reliable results. Our skilled team combines their expertise with a compassionate approach, prioritizing your comfort and understanding throughout the examination or treatment process. Your vision is our priority, and we are dedicated to helping you maintain healthy eyes and clear vision. Schedule your eye exam with us today at Southside Medical Center in Atlanta, GA, and take the first step toward optimal eye health.