Your cornea is the clear covering that’s located over your pupil. Light passes through the cornea before entering the eye, and as a result, the cornea plays a major role in your ability to focus. Some statistics indicate the cornea is responsible for about 70% of your eye’s focusing power. That means if the cornea is damaged or misshapen, it can have a major effect on the way you see. The cornea can also become scratched or abraded, significantly increasing your risk for severe eye infections. People who wear contact lenses are also at risk for corneal damage from lenses that don’t fit properly or are not properly cleaned or worn as directed.
Corneal topography uses computer technology to create a 3D map of the cornea, showing any damage or structural abnormalities that could interfere with vision or result in disease. For contact lens wearers or for people interested in LASIK or other refractive surgeries, the resulting map is an important tool for making sure your lenses fit properly and for determining if you’re a good candidate for refractive surgery. Plus, it can play an essential role in diagnosing vision problems after certain types of surgery, including cataract removal and corneal transplant surgery.
Corneal topography is completely painless and noninvasive, and it takes about five minutes to complete. During the assessment, you’ll sit with your head resting against a plate or bar, looking at a special bowl-shaped device that generates a series of lighted rings. As you look at the bowl, the topography machine uses a series of data points to measure the “highs and lows” of your cornea, creating a corneal map that’s similar to a topographic map of geographic features. The assessment can be performed during the same visit as a comprehensive eye exam or it may be scheduled separately.
Not necessarily. Corneal topography typically is only performed in patients who may be at risk for certain eye diseases or conditions, who wear or want to wear contact lenses, or who have vision issues that the doctor feels might be related to or involve the cornea. Your eye doctor will discuss the need for corneal topography during your exam.
At G. Dennis Leaks, OD, LTD., we accept most major insurance plans. Here is a short-list of just some of the most popular plans we accept. Please contact our office if you do not see your insurance provider listed.