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Goldmann Applanation Tonometry

Goldmann Applanation Tonometry

Tonometry is an eye test that measures the pressure inside your eyes, to determine whether or not you may be at risk for glaucoma.

What is Goldmann Applanation Tonometry?

Goldmann Applanation Tonometry is currently considered to be the Gold Standard method of measuring the pressure inside your eyes (the intraocular pressure or IOP). This method indirectly measures the pressure by gauging how much force it takes to flatten the cornea. Just like pressing the surface of a balloon; if there is a small amount of air inside and it feels soft, there is a low pressure within the balloon. But if the balloon is hard and full of air, it takes more force to flatten the balloon, meaning there is a high pressure within the balloon.

Some people generally have high pressure and it increases naturally as we get older. Abnormally high pressures can be present due to a number of different reasons but can be a symptom of Glaucoma.

Why we use Goldmann Applanation Tonometry

Conventional opticians measure your intraocular pressure by using whats called a non-contact tonometer. This is a machine that you sit in front of and a puff of air is then forced onto the surface of the eye. This is usually performed by an unqualified optical assistant, who has only been trained to operate the machine and who normally does not understand the results.

This method is not accurate for a number of reasons. Many customers find this test extremely uncomfortable and will pull away from the machine, the distance between the machine and the surface of the eye can have a substantial impact on the result. Patients are subjected to three short puffs of air in each eye and with an average of those measurements recorded. If the measurements are higher than average, you would then be referred to the hospital or an eye clinic; resulting in not only a lengthy wait for an appointment but added inconvenient stress.

Here Goldmann Applanation Tonometry is performed as part of your examination by the optometrist. This leaves very little room for error as they are qualified in not only performing the test but interpreting the results. If high pressures are recorded our specialists have the equipment to perform further tests including Corneal Pachymetry and Glaucoma Assessments. Meaning very few patients are ever referred elsewhere.

Who Should Have This Test?

  • If you are over 40
  • If you have been diagnosed with Glaucoma
  • If you have a family history of Glaucoma