ULTRASOUND OF THE EYE: Normal

 

ANATOMY OF THE EYE

 

External eye anatomy Cross sectional anatomy of the eye.
External eye anatomy Cross sectional eye anatomy
Eye ultrasound scan plane - transverse Labelled ultrasound of the normal eye
Scan gently through a closed eye
The comparative anatomy between the eye ultrasound and  the anatomy diagram above

 

Eye ultrasound focussed on the anterior chamber eye ultrasound showing the retro-occular space.

Eye ultrasound:

Hover the cursor over to see highlighted anatomy of the anterior chamber

Increase your depth to visualise the retro-occular region.

View the eye with the patient looking to extremes of up, down, left and right.

 



ULTRASOUND OF  THE EYE PROTOCOL

 

ROLE OF ULTRASOUND

  • Ultrasound is used primarily to assess internal structures of the globe, particularly when direct visualization is obscured by cataracts or haemorrhage.
  • Assessment of intraoccular masses & measurement of tumour thickness for staging.
  • Differentiating between choroidal or retinal detachments.
  • Some retro-occular applications.
  • Relationship of normal anatomy and pathology to each other

 

EQUIPMENT SELECTION

Use of a high resolution, small footprint probe (10-15MHZ) is essential when assessing the internal structures of the globe. Good colour / power / Doppler capabilities when assessing vessels or vascularity of a structure.

 

SCANNING TECHNIQUE

Explain the procedure. Position the patient supine.

Scan the patient through closed eyes.

Give the patient some tissues and explain that should they need to open their eyes, to let you know and they can use the tissues to wipe their eye.
If possible, use sterile gel. Apply a small amount of gel to the probe.
Be prepared to change frequency output of probe (or probes) to adequately assess both superficial and deeper structures.


ANTERIOR CHAMBER


Reduce the depth to include the posterior aspect of the lens and zoom to fill the screen.
Use thick gel and minimal to no pressure because the anterior chamber is easily compressed. Sweep in both sagittal and transverse checking for symmetry. Look for sharp margins where the cornea meets the lateral margins of the iris & ciliary bodies.
Ensure the lens is intact, anechoic and normally located. A cataract will be seen as echogenic heterogeneity of the lens.
Document the normal anatomy and any pathology found, including measurements and vascularity if indicated.


POSTERIOR CHAMBER


Increase the depth to include the entire globe and proximal optic nerve.
In transverse, ask the patient to look left and right to facilitate maximum scan range. Similarly, in sagittal, ask the patient to look up/down. Look for a smooth inner wall of uniform thickness and echogenicity. Check for homogeneity of the vitreous humour. Commonly in elderly people there will be some echogenic 'debris' within the vitreous due to degenerative changes. A vitreous haemorrhage will be seen as mobile, fibrinous, complex material possible tethered.
Whilst rare to see pathology, check that the optic nerve is unform and symmetrical in size bilaterally with no retro-occular masses.
Document the normal anatomy and any pathology found, including measurements and vascularity if indicated.

COMMON PATHOLOGY

(click for link to pathology page with descriptions and images)


 


BASIC HARD COPY IMAGING

An eye series should include the following minimum images:

  • Anterior chamber - longitudinal and transverse.
  • Entire globe: Longitudinal-eyes up/down
  • Entire globe: Transverse-eyes left/right
  • Power doppler of retina
  • Macula/Fovea longitudinal and transverse
  • Comparison Right V's Left

Document the normal anatomy. Any pathology found in 2 planes, including measurements and any vascularity.

 


 


 

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