Fundus photographs / imaging
What – there are number of different types of camera that are used to photograph / image the back of your eye but the processes of acquiring the images are similar. You will need to rest your chin on the chin-rest of the camera and look straight ahead at a target or as directed by the operator. You need to keep your eyes still during the image capture which may be accompanied by a camera flash.
Why – there are different reasons why your doctor may have requested fundus photography / imaging but usually the reason is for documentation purposes. Recording such images facilitates later comparisons of the features that are of interest.
Preparation – usually no specific preparation is needed BUT eye-drops to dilated your pupils will probably be required in order to improve the view of the back of your eye. These drops may blur your vision for about 4 hours and you should NOT DRIVE until the effects have worn off completely. It is best therefore not to drive to such appointments.
Risk - there is no risk associated with taking fundus photographs / images. Doing so will neither hurt nor affect your sight – although your vision may be blurred for a few hours if eye-drops are required to dilate your pupil.
How long will it take – each fundus photograph / image takes only a second or so to acquire but computer processing may take a several seconds and the whole process of image acquisition may take 5 minutes. If your pupils are dilated you may have to wait 15-20 minutes before the images can be taken and there may also be a queue!