What is Optical Coherence Tomography?

Sight is precious

“The Future, Today!”

At Lane Cove Optical we are committed to providing you with the highest standard of eye care available. With this in mind, we have recently installed the very latest technology to include Optical Coherence Tomography. This allows us to take 3-dimensional scans of the back and front of your eyes, rather like an MRI scanner does for the rest of the body. This is one of the most advanced diagnostic tools available. An OCT scan is comfortable, and non-invasive. The images are captured in seconds, using optical scanning and flash photography, without the need to come into contact with your eyes. The images show exceptional detail and allow us to compare your eyes over time, showing changes that would be impossible to detect without this revolutionary new equipment.

With OCT we can now for the first time, look beneath the surface of the eye, at the layers below. We can
microscopically magnify them and ensure that they are healthy. A detailed retinal photograph is taken at the same time. By measuring and monitoring the key layers within the back of the eye we can pick up abnormal changes which would not otherwise become apparent until much later in the development of a disease.

Retinal OCT Scan & Retinal Photography

What are the Benefits?

We can look beneath the retinal surface and detect:

  • Changes too small to be seen by other methods
  • Eye diseases such as Glaucoma, Macular Degeneration, and Diabetic Retinopathy may be detected and treatment started at a much earlier stage, helping to preserve your sight. We can keep a permanent record, so small changes can be regularly monitored.
  • Should referral be required, we are able to include photographs and diagnostic levels of detail. For the first time you can see and understand any changes taking place.

Who should have OCT?

Everyone who wants the best available eye care, particularly:

  • Those over 40 years
  • Anyone with a family history of eye problems
  • Diabetics and smokers
  • Anyone with health problems, or who is taking medication that may affect the eyes
  • Anyone who has had an abnormality detected using any other method
  • Anyone with particular concerns regarding their vision, or eye health


Macular Degeneration

The macula is the most important part of the retina at the back of your eye. It provides the central “fine detail” vision which allows you to work, read and watch TV with clarity. Macular Degeneration affects the macula, resulting in a loss of central vision and is one of the major causes of blindness in the western world.

OCT technology gives a three-dimensional view of the macula so that your optometrist can make an early diagnosis if you are at risk of Macula Degeneration, helping them try to preserve your precious central sight.



Glaucoma is a slow progressing disease which causes gradual irreversible damage to the nerve fibres in the retina. This damage affects your peripheral vision first and if left untreated, will ultimately affect your central vision as well.

As any loss of vision usually occurs gradually, it often goes unnoticed until it is well advanced. OCT technology gives your optometrist the ability to measure the thickness of your retinal nerve fibres and compares this with normal values for your age and genetic type. Abnormalities can be found and treatment initiated before any loss of vision occurs.



diabetic-retinopathyDiabetic Retinopathy

Diabetes is a disease which ultimately affects the blood vessels (arteries and veins) in our body. The back of the eye relies on the oxygen from blood for nourishment, so diabetes can have serious effects on vision. Haemorrhages and micro aneurysms (tiny bulges of the walls of blood vessels) can be detected by OCT and full-colour scanning by the in-built retinal imaging system, making early detection possible and helping reduce the impact of diabetes.