Meet Our Comprehensive Eye Care Specialists:
Comprehensive Eye Exams
Optometrists and ophthalmologists use a wide variety of tests and procedures to examine your eyes. These tests range from simple ones, like having you read an eye chart, to complex tests, such as using a high-powered lens to visualize the tiny structures inside of your eyes.
Visual Acuity Tests
Among the first tests performed in a comprehensive eye exam are visual acuity tests that measure the sharpness of your vision. These usually are performed using a projected eye chart to measure your distance visual acuity and a small, hand-held acuity chart to measure your near vision.
A screening test that checks your color vision often is performed early in a comprehensive eye exam to rule out color blindness. In addition to detecting hereditary color vision deficiencies, colorblind tests also can alert your eye doctor to possible eye health problems that may affect your color vision.
While there are many ways for your eye doctor to check how your eyes work together, the cover test is the simplest and most common.
During a cover test, the eye doctor will have you focus on a small object at distance and will then cover each of your eyes alternately while you stare at the target. As they do this, eye doctors observe how much each eye has to move when uncovered to pick up the fixation target. The test is then repeated as you focus on a near object.
Cover tests can detect even very subtle misalignments that can interfere with your eyes working together properly (binocular vision) and cause amblyopia or “lazy eye.”
Ocular Motility (Eye Movements) Testing
Ocular motility testing is performed to determine how well your eyes can follow a moving object and/or quickly move between and accurately fixate on two separate targets.
Testing of smooth eye movements (“pursuits”) is more common. Your eye doctor will have you hold your head still and ask you to follow the slow movement of a hand-held light or other target with just your eyes. If quick eye movements (“saccades”) also are tested, your eye doctor might have you move your eyes back and forth between two targets positioned some distance apart from each other.
Problems with eye movements can cause eyestrain and may affect reading ability, sports vision and other skills.
Low vision is vision loss that is so severe it cannot be corrected with regular eyeglasses, contact lenses, or surgery. Vision cannot be improved with regular eyeglasses, medicine or surgery, people with low vision need help to learn how to make the most of their remaining sight and keep their independence. Losing vision does not mean giving up your activities, but it does mean finding new ways of doing them.
This is the detailed vision we use when we look directly at something. Macular degeneration (AMD) affects central vision. Diabetic retinopathy can affect central or peripheral vision.
This is the less detailed vision we use to see everything around the edges. Glaucoma affects peripheral vision first. Strokes can affect one side of the peripheral vision.
This is the ability to distinguish between objects of similar tones like milk in a white cup or to distinguish facial features. All eye problems can decrease contrast sensitivity.
This is the ability to judge the position of objects. New vision loss in one eye can affect depth perception, such as the height of a step.
The lens in our eye focuses light rays onto our retina. The retina converts these light rays into signals that are sent through the optic nerve to our brain, where they are interpreted as the images we see. A problem with any of these processes affects our vision in various ways.
Vision loss can be a traumatic experience. Thankfully, there are organizations that provide services and tools to help visually impaired individuals enjoy a rich and fulfilling life.
No matter how mild or severe your vision impairment is, there are programs and products that can help you live independently, work effectively and enjoy a wide variety of hobbies and recreational activities.