Out of this world optical technology that was - until a few years ago - only widely available in hospital eye departments will be available in Specsavers stores nationwide this month.

Called OCT (optical coherence tomography), this eye health check is set to transform the industry’s evaluation of a customer’s overall eye health on our high streets.

The innovation of OCT is pretty impressive, and testament to its credentials is the fact that astronauts have been known to use OCT technology to measure the effect of space travel on the eye.

How does it work?

The OCT uses light to take more than 1,000 images of the back of the eye including the retina and optic nerve.  A layered image is then created to allow the optometrist to view the deeper structures of the eye in more detail than ever before. From here, its future-gazing potential can then help detect preventable, sight-threating conditions up to four years earlier than a standard eye test.

These images are then stored, allowing the Specsavers’ team of optometrists to refer back to a customer’s results from their prior appointment and detect any subtle changes that can then be addressed.

Some of the conditions that can be picked up earlier and monitored with an OCT test include diabetic retinopathy, macular degeneration and glaucoma. In some rarer cases, concerns relating to wider health issues like a brain tumour have been picked up thanks to the detailed scan.

Big news for the optical industry 

‘This is big news and a first nationwide roll out for the optical industry,’ says Dr Nigel Best, Specsavers clinical spokesperson.

‘Our nationwide roll out of this innovation is “one big step for mankind” when it comes to accessing fantastic innovation and helping to preserve the nation’s eye health. To be able to bring this technology to our customers on UK high streets in the decade of 2020 feels extra poignant too.’

To highlight the innovative new equipment revolutionising the high street, Specsavers has also launched a TV ad which sees an OCT machine floating alongside the Hubble Telescope in outer space.

To find out more about OCT or to book an appointment, visit www.specsavers.co.uk

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