The Red Eye

Red, irritable eyes are one of the most frequent eye conditions that we may encounter.
Most patients will naturally think about visiting their GP in the first instance, their pharmacist for therapy, while a smaller proportion of patients will consult an Optometrist.
Which professional that is chosen determines the ability to examine the eye in certain detail. While most GPs may have a magnifying loupe that allows them a magnified view of the external eye, and a hand-held ophthalmoscope to view the posterior eye, Optometrists have a range of equipment that provides:
• High level magnification of the external eye with a biomicroscope, including a variety of light beams and dyes, to determine the exact location of any disease,
• Specialised lenses to obtain a binocular view (3D) of the posterior eye including the retina and optic nerve
• Eye pressure measuring instruments to understand the risk of glaucoma and other eye disease
• 3D eye-scanning technology to observe and analyse the different layers of the cornea, retina, and optic nerve
The red eye requires careful assessment, aided by modern technology, to effectively treat the underlying condition which may involve only the eye or is a sign of more systemic disease.
Once the eye condition is diagnosed, we will either manage you until resolution, refer you to your GP for screening and treating systemic conditions like high blood pressure, diabetes, or inflammatory disease. In rare cases, we may need to refer you to an eye surgeon who may need to consider surgical treatment options.
A red eye can be quite complex and will need careful assessment to determine the cause and initiate specific treatment that is effective and safe. After all, we all want clear healthy-looking eyes and excellent vision!



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