One of the key measurements that our eye doctors look at as part of your annual comprehensive eye and vision examination is a measure of your eye pressure. Just as you have a blood pressure, the fluid on the inside your eye exerts a pressure on the eye itself which can be measured as your intraocular pressure. Intraocular pressure is a critical eye health measurement because its upward fluctuation is associated with an eye disease called glaucoma. In fact, the only way to treat glaucoma is to affect the eye pressure, lowering it with topical medications, laser surgery, or traditional scalpel surgeries. The traditional measurement of intraocular pressure is accomplished with an instrument called a Goldmann tonometer.
While Goldmann tonometry is highly reliable and consistent, it does require the use of anesthetic drops which patients may remember as the “sticky yellow eye drops.”
Long considered the “gold standard” in eye pressure-measurement, Goldmann tonometry is sometimes not practical, as it requires the ocular surface to be anesthetized before measurement is taken. This can be a problem, especially for those patients that wear contact lenses. For routine eye pressure measurement, non-contact tonometry has been developed.
While the air-puff is sometimes aggravating, the great thing about non-contact tonometry is that no eye drops are required in order to measure eye pressure. A small puff of air is directed at each eye, and the computer estimates the eye’s pressure. No yellow drops are needed! However, the air puff test is sometimes not well tolerated by those patients with sensitive eyes. For those patients, a new tonometer was recently developed.
iCare tonometry is a technique that utilizes an instrument to measure eye pressure without the use of eye drops and without the need for puffing the eye. Vista Eye Care offers no-puff eye exams for those patients that don’t want to be puffed. We also offer use of the iCare tonometer to children who otherwise wouldn’t be able to sit for the other measurement techniques, or those folks in wheelchairs or who can’t easily reach the other instruments. Now, even if you prefer not to be puffed, we can still measure your eye pressure and make sure that your eyes are healthy!
Eye pressure is a critical health indicator that should be measured each year. If you need to schedule your annual eye and vision examination, please call us at (303) 450-2020, or use the button below to schedule your examination online!