It allows the ophthalmologist to take a closer look at the different structures in the front and inside of the eye. It is a key tool for determining eye health and detecting eye diseases. The eye doctor may use a microscope called a slit lamp to examine the front of the eye. The microscope focuses a narrow, intense line of light on the eye.
The slit lamp provides an enlarged 3D view of the eye and allows the doctor to detect any minor abnormalities. Used with special lenses placed close to the eye, the slit lamp also provides detailed views of the back of the eye. When you visit your eye doctor, he won't just check to see if he can see the eye chart clearly. The doctor will also use a slit lamp to make sure your eyes are healthy.
Eye diseases can be difficult to diagnose during a regular physical exam. Ophthalmologists diagnose and examine certain eye conditions using a variety of specialized tools. During a complete eye exam, your eye doctor is likely to give you a slit lamp exam. Once you are in the ophthalmologist's exam chair, he or she will place a slit lamp in front of you and ask you to rest your forehead and chin on the supports.
It will then turn on the slit lamp and focus a narrow, high-intensity beam of light toward the eye.