Before your exam, our certified technicians will perform a thorough assessment of your eyes with a variety of tests to better determine your eye health. A baseline prescription for eyeglasses and/or contact lenses will also be determined. Results from pre-examination testing procedures are given to the doctor before they perform your eye examination.
During the examination, your doctor will look for:
- Your ability to see clearly at near and far distances
- Your ability to change focus efficiently and comfortably
- Your ability to use both eyes as a team
- Vision conditions like nearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism, and presbyopia
- Eye diseases and conditions such as glaucoma and cataracts
- General health conditions such as diabetes and high blood pressure
The results from the pre-examination testing, the doctors’ examination of your eyes, and your family medical history determine the health of your eyes and your prescription, if needed.
The following tests are administered:
An instrument called a non-contact tonometer is used to check the intraocular pressure inside the eye. A puff of air is directed toward the cornea, determining the pressure. This test is performed to detect glaucoma. There are few symptoms until the final stages of the disease, making early detection extremely important in providing treatment.
We routinely check blood pressure during pre-examination testing. Undetected or untreated, high blood pressure can lead to stroke, heart disease, kidney disease, and blindness. The doctor will also check blood pressure during your eye examination when they examine the blood vessels inside your eyes.
Color Vision Testing
Changes in color vision can often be the first sign of a vision problem. A color vision test checks your ability to distinguish between different colors and to determine how well your optic nerve works. The optic nerve is the main nerve connecting the eye to the brain.
This test assists in determining a baseline prescription for eyeglasses and contact lenses. It also shows the shape of your cornea to assist with a contact lens fitting.
The autoperimeter is used to determine the limits of your central and peripheral (side) vision. It can also detect early visual field loss.
Assessment of Current Eyewear/Contact Lenses
We measure the prescription in your current eyewear to help us assess any visual problems you may be experiencing and to assist in determining a suitable new prescription.
The optomap retinal exam assesses the health of your retina. This optional test gives the doctor the most complete view of the back of the eye enabling early problem detection without the discomforts of pupil dilation.
The visual acuity test is used to determine the smallest letters a person can read on a standardized chart or card held 14-20 feet away. Visual acuity is expressed as a fraction. The top number refers to the distance you stand from the chart. This is usually 20 feet. The bottom number indicates the distance at which a person with normal eyesight could read the same line you correctly read. For example, 20/20 is considered normal. 20/40 indicates that the line you correctly read at 20 feet can be read by a person with normal vision from 40 feet away.
Using eye drops, your pupils may be dilated in order to better examine the inside of your eyes and overall eye health. When needed, dilation provides you with the most thorough eye health examination possible. Dilation is very safe, but it is recommended that you come to your visit accompanied by a driver as your near vision may be compromised for several hours.
Participants of AOA's InfantSEE Program
The American Optometric Association’s InfantSEE Program provides a FREE eye examination for every infant in the United States at participating optometric practices. Well-baby eye exams are just as important as well-baby check-ups. When detected early on, eye conditions such as amblyopia (lazy eye) can be successfully treated.
Maine Optometry is proud to offer FREE infant eye exams to everyone, regardless of parental income. To learn more about the program, visit the InfantSEE web site at www.infantsee.org.
The HRT/OCT represents the most current advancement in the management of glaucoma. Its technology allows the doctors to image your optic nerve and the surrounding nerve fibers of the retina. Repeated over time, these optic nerve images are precisely measured and fine changes to the tissue of the nerve are detected.
Peripheral Vision Loss
This is specialty testing for glaucoma patients. It helps to determine the progression of the disease and assists the doctors in providing treatment. In other individuals, the test can help to determine vision loss anywhere along the visual pathway from the cornea to the occipital lobe in the brain.
The cornea is mapped to determine its shape and steepness. This helps the doctor to determine whether or not a patient is eligible for laser vision correction. It is also useful for tracking and assessing corneal dystrophies such as keratoconus or pellucid marginal degeneration.
This specialized testing is performed to determine intraocular pressure when tracking specific diseases of the eye.
The pachymeter ultrasonically determines the thickness of the cornea and is used to help determine whether or not a medical condition is present.
Visual Evoked Potentials (VEP) is a specialty test to determine if there is damage to the visual pathway. It is a novel instrument for the monitoring of amblyopia and can help to show children and parents any progress being made in regards to the treatment protocols prescribed by an optometrist. The VEP can also be used to assess and monitor a number of other disease processes that can affect the visual pathway: glaucoma, optic neuropathies, visual disturbances, multiple sclerosis, among many others.