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Common Equipment in Ophthalmology

Learn about commonly used equipment in ophthalmology for examination and treatment

Ophthalmology equipment refers to the equipment used to perform eye examinations. Ophthalmologists have an array of machines and devices to examine and diagnose eye conditions. These devices are used in medical instances to examine conditions of the eye and also to fit the correct glass lenses and contact lenses. There are many types of devices and machines used for many different procedures and examinations. Here are some of the most common.

Types of Examination Equipment

  • Direct Ophthalmoscope – A direct ophthalmoscope is a hand-held instrument that is used for routine examinations of the eye. Inside, it contains a battery, a variable lightsource, and a set of lenses used to focus on the structures of the eye.
  • Indirect Ophthalmoscope – A binocular indirect ophthalmoscope (BIO) is worn as a headset and is used along with a condensing aspheric lens held close to the patient’s eye. A BIO gives a much wider view of the eye and and almost complete view of the patient’s retina.
  • Slit Lamp – A slit lamp is used specifically for examining the external and the internal anterior structures of the eye. They are used to identify diseases, find foreign objects, fit contact lenses, and visualize surgical laser procedures. The slit lamp is composed of a miscroscope and a light source.
  • Tonometer – The eye maintains its shape due to a constant internal pressure. This pressure is called intraocular pressure or IOP. Opthalmologists use a Tonometer to measure this pressure. Increased pressure can indicate glaucoma.
  • Phoropter – Also known as a refractor is a large pair of (basically) glasses that have multiple lenses that can reproduce almost any possible optical correction. This device is used to measure the most appropriate lenses for glasses.
  • Keratometer – This is used to measure the curvature of the anterior central zone of the cornea, which is the most important refractive surface of the human eye. Measurements are known as K readings and are used for fitting contact lenses.

Treatment Machines

  • Ophthalmic Lasers – These lasers allow a precise treatment of various conditions without the risk of infection. Many procedures are relatively pain free and can be performed on an out patient basis.
  • Vitrectomy Machine – The clear jelly like liquid that fills the eye is called vitreous. Because it is clear, light can travel easily through it. Any cloudiness or inconsistency in this liquid can lead to vision problems. A vitrectomy machine allows a surgeon to remove the tainted vitreous andd replace it with a clear liquid.
  • Operating Microscope – Eye surgeons use operating microscopes in procedures that require high magnification and variable focusing. Its features include pedal controlled motorized focusing, motorized zoom magnification, and motorized longitudinal positioning. These features allow the surgeon to focus on the surgery rather repositioning the microscope.
  • Cryo Surgical Unit – Cryosurgery is the use of cold temperatures to treat a variety of conditions. Cryo surgical units or CSU apply a refrigerant to withdraw heat from the target area with a cool probe. The effect is to freeze the surrounding tissue so that it dies.

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