Intraocular Pressure Test


Lt Col Reynolds
The test used to measure intraocular pressure, or the pressure inside the eye, is called tonometry. This test is important in determining if a patient has glaucoma, which is a disease associated with increased pressure in the eye, and damage to the optic nerve, which can cause blindness. Dr. Flemings, can you tell us more about intraocular pressure tests?

Lt Col Flemings
Of course, Dr. Reynolds. Applanation tonometry measures the amount of force needed to temporarily flatten a part of the cornea. This test can be conducted in several ways and generally requires the use of an anesthetic drop to numb the eye.

A yellow-orange dye called fluorescein may be used in some tests. This dye washes out with the eye’s natural production of tears. Using the slit lamp or another instrument, the provider touches the cornea with a tonometer, which will measure the intraocular pressure. The patient will not feel it, and the anesthetic will wear off within two hours.