Gonioscopy

Gonioscopy is an examination of the front of the eye (anterior chamber), between the cornea and the iris.

What does Gonioscopy involve?

First, your eyes will be anesthetized with special drops to make sure you don’t feel any discomfort during the examination. Then your ophthalmologist will examine your eyes with a gonioscope – a small device designed with inner mirrors and a lens at one end that rests on the cornea like a contact lens. When the lens is placed above the cornea, the inner mirrors allow the doctor to see the anterior angle of the eye.

Once the objective is placed on the eye, a beam of light is directed into the eye using a slit-lamp microscope. You may feel pressure on your eyelids or eyelashes during a gonioscopy, but the test should otherwise be painless.

Gonioscopy is performed with the head positioned in the slit lamp (the special microscope used to examine the eyes). Examination of both eyes usually takes a few minutes.

Recommendations before the procedure:

  • If you wear contact lenses, it is recommended that you do not use them a few hours before the procedure;
  • After the investigation you may have blurred vision (for a few minutes or hours) and for this reason it is recommended not to drive immediately afterwards.

What can be diagnosed by Gonioscopy?

Vision changes that begin to appear around age of 40 put adults at greater risk of developing various eye disorders, including glaucoma. Gonioscopy may be recommended for adults at this age and above, especially for those at higher risk of developing glaucoma.

For example, glaucoma can be inherited, so if you are a “suspect” for glaucoma because of your family’s medical history, your ophthalmologist may recommend a routine gonioscopy to monitor for any indication of developing the disorder. In addition, if certain related abnormalities are detected during a basic eye examination, a gonioscopy is also recommended.

Text medically reviewed by Dr. Teodor Holhoș, Ophthalmic Surgeon
Written by Dr. Holhos Team
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