2020–2021 BCSC Basic and Clinical Science Course™
12 Retina and Vitreous
Part I: Fundamentals and Diagnostic Approaches
Chapter 02: Diagnostic Approach to Retinal Disease
Adaptive Optics Imaging
Adaptive optics imaging is a collection of techniques that compensates for wavefront alterations in real time. These techniques, which were developed for use in astronomical telescopes, can help compensate for changes induced by variations in tear film and ocular currents, among other causes. The photoreceptors in the retina can act as waveguides; if light is within the acceptance angle of the waveguide they augment the reflection produced. This augmentation provides an opportunity to visualize individual photoreceptors in the retina. These photoreceptors are stimulated with a laser, allowing imaging information to be obtained about specific types of photoreceptors. However, this type of imaging is extremely time consuming, and it requires expensive custom-built instruments to obtain satisfactory results. Significant adoption of adaptive optics imaging in eye clinics has been prevented by the time required, the complexity of the instrumentation, and the limited ability to image all patients (eg, patients with media opacities or intraocular lenses cannot be imaged).
Excerpted from BCSC 2020-2021 series: Section 10 - Glaucoma. For more information and to purchase the entire series, please visit https://www.aao.org/bcsc.