The Goldendale Sentinel - Headlines & History since 1879

By Dallas Smith

New machine at Ogden office helps check eyesight


Lisa Cunningham

VISIONARY MACHINE: There is new technology at Dr. James Ogden's office. It's called an Ocular Coherence Tomography machine, and here a patient looks through the device. At the desk is Goldendale High School volunteer Wyatt Barrett, with Ogden looking on.

New to Dr. James Ogden's office is a refurbished ocular coherence tomography machine.

"Before having this technology, Goldendale residents would be referred to a retina specialist who would provide service in The Dalles or Yakima or simply not do it," says Ogden. Now Ogden offers an improved service for scanning patients' retinas to determine if there are any changes to fibers of the optic nerve.

The new machine's arrival turned out to be quite the event. When it arrived in late February, it was brought in a semi trailer. The semi parked in the center of Main Street while the driver asked Ogden where his forklift was to unload the machine. Neither Ogden nor the driver had a forklift. So after some thought Ogden called Jim Allyn and asked if he could have the machine delivered to Allyn's Building Center. After Allyn agreed, the machine was dropped off there, then delivered to the office via Allyn's forklift the next week.

Optical coherence tomography (OCT) uses light waves to produce high-resolution cross-section pictures of the retina. These images allow optometrists to map and measure the thickness of the retina. Then the measurements can be used for early detection of retinal diseases and conditions according to the American Academy of Ophthalmology.

Prior to the procedure, eye drops are used to make the pupil larger, for better visibility of the retina. Once the patient's pupils have dilated, the patient looks into the machine for a few seconds, and the scan is complete. The images can be viewed on a computer, and patients whose scans are abnormal are referred to a specialist. These tests are included in coverage defined by the Affordable Care Act (ACA), and Medicare covers them as well.

Ogden says this new machine will help him aid future patients in determining their eye health.

-With reports from Lisa Cunningham


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