When you arrive at one of our offices for your appointment, you will be greeted by our receptionist who will help check you in and make sure we have all of your current contact, health and insurance information.
For your convenience, if you are a new patient, you can download our new patient forms prior to your visit, complete them, and bring them with you when you come.
Please bring these forms along with your insurance cards, photo ID, current medications and a driver since your eyes will be dilated.
Evaluation and Diagnosis
Our medical staff can often evaluate, test, diagnose and treat you. As result, a comprehensive evaluation, with or without treatment, could last anywhere from two to four hours.
A physician's assistant will ask all first-time patients to provide a thorough medical history, including all medications. On each visit, we will perform a vision test and a measurement of the intraocular pressure, followed by dilation of the eyes. After a wait to allow your pupils to dilate adequately, your Retina Associates physician will examine you.
Sometimes we may request additional testing, and it is often possible to perform and interpret these tests during the same visit.
We always suggest that you bring someone to drive you home since your eyes will remain dilated for several hours. Sunglasses may help reduce glare; if you need some, please ask at the front desk before you leave.
Full Range of Testing
We provide a full range of testing at all of our Retina Associates offices, using the latest technology and equipment. Some examples of testing we perform include:
- Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) - a non-invasive, non-contact device that obtains an extremely high-resolution, cross-sectional image of the affected area, and enhances diagnosis and treatment of patients with macular degeneration, macular holes, epiretinal membranes, diabetic macular edema and other macular diseases.
- Diagnostic Ultrasound - uses sound waves to form an image of the eye and is used to examine the inside of the eye.
- Fluorescein Angiography - involves the injection of a small amount of vegetable-based dye through a patient's peripheral vein, usually the arm or hand. Shortly after, an ophthalmic photographer takes a series of time-dependent retinal photographs. The injected dye lights up the retina's intricate vascular network and helps pinpoint problem areas.
- Fundus Photography - a non-invasive diagnostic procedure that provides photographs of the back of the eye to help determine the health of the optic nerve, vitreous, macula, retina and its blood vessels.
If treatment of your eye problem is indicated, you and your physician will decide the most appropriate course of action.
Some types of treatment can be performed in our offices at the time of your visit while others are performed at the Baptist Eye Center on the surgery floor. Common procedures performed include:
- Vitrectomy - A small cutting instrument is used to enter the eye through a 1 mm incision, and the vitreous gel is removed and replaced with a gas bubble. The advantage of this method is that all the debris, scar tissue and membranes on the retina can be removed, and the retina flattened at the time of surgery. A laser may be used to seal off the tears. This is not an office procedure and is scheduled in advance unless it is on an urgent basis.
- Intravitreal injections - Various medications can be injected directly into the eye's vitreous cavity to treat some eye diseases in our office setting.
- Laser treatment - Laser therapy is used to treat a number of vitreoretinal conditions and can be done in our office as well as our satellite locations in many cases.