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Information on the ophthalmic imaging service at St Paul’s Eye Unit at the Royal Liverpool University Hospital

Ophthalmic imaging is a highly specialised field of ophthalmology which helps doctors to diagnose and manage a wide variety of eye conditions.

This is a rapidly developing area, with new instruments and techniques allowing us to better understand eye diseases and their treatments. This means we can offer the best possible patient experience and minimise the time patients spend in the department.

Performed as outpatient appointment, we offer patients the very latest technologies in ophthalmic imaging including:

Colour fundus imaging

Purpose: To capture highly-detailed colour images of the retina (at the back of the eye).

The cameras we use allow a wide range of specialised images including 3D imaging, ultra wide field fundus photography and fundus autofluorescence, a technique using various differing wavelengths of light.

Ocular angiography

Purpose: To show the blood circulation within the eye to help doctors diagnose and treat conditions that affect the back or front of the eye.

Patients are injected in the arm with a dye which it passes through blood vessels to the eye in within about 15 seconds. Very detailed photographs are then taken of the eye for around ten minutes.

Optical Coherence Tomography (O.C.T.)

Purpose: To capture thousands of detailed scans showing the very fine layers that make up the retina (at the back of the eye) and choroid to help clinicians diagnose, monitor and plan treatments for various eye diseases and conditions.

OCT is a cross sectional and 3D imaging technique using the latest technology which lasts a few minutes and can also be used for the front of the eye, which is useful for imaging a damaged cornea (the front surface of the eye).

Anterior segment photography

Purpose: To look at the structures making up the front of the eye and any conditions which may affect them.

Highly magnified images can be taken, giving our clinicians a very detailed view of the cornea, iris and sclera (the white area of the eyeball).

Corneal topographic imaging

Purpose: To create a thorough and comprehensive view of the patient’s eye condition to fully understand the treatment options.

Corneal topography is a non-invasive and painless imaging technique that enables us to create a 3D map of the surface curvature of the cornea, the outer structure of the eye, within seconds. Patients may to undergo several of these imaging tests.