Advances in OCT: on the right wavelength (C-100451)

30 July 2021
Summer 2021

Kim Thomas looks at new developments in optical coherence tomography hardware, including faster refresh rates and increased accuracy, and wonders what the future holds for the technology.

Domains covered

Clinical practice

Optical coherence tomography (OCT) is now widely used in optometrists’ high-street practices, where it has proved a highly effective tool for early diagnosis of conditions such as glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy (DR) and age-related macular degeneration (AMD). In recent years, however, technological advances have added even more clinical value. 

One development has been the introduction of multispectral confocal scanning laser imaging. Currently only available as a module on Heidelberg’s Spectralis machine, under the name MultiColor, the technology simultaneously uses three laser wavelengths – infrared, green reflectance and blue reflectance – to provide diagnostic images that show distinct structures at different depths within the retina. 

Jignesh Patel, Consultant Ophthalmologist at Colchester Hospital, who specialises in retinal surgery, is a fan: “The advantages are that it breaks up the retina into different slabs, so you can look at the different layers of the retina, and you can pinpoint the area the pathology is mainly affecting. This allows you to monitor progression or improvement.”

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