Please read the letter carefully as the venue may have changed since last year. Bring with you any distance glasses you have (those for TV or driving). Also bring sunglasses for afterwards.
What will happen at the appointment?
You will be asked to read an eye chart wearing your distance glasses or contact lenses if any.
Drops will then be put into your eyes to dilate the pupils.
After the pupils dilate, usually 10-12 mins, 2 photographs of each eye are taken. The photographs are examined at the hospital and a letter with results is sent to both you and your GP.
Do I Have to have drops?
All treatment is voluntary but there are good reasons for using the drops. Some of the changes that occur in the retina are subtle and in order to see them we need a good quality photograph. That means plenty of light must enter the eye and bounce back out again to make the image. Young people often have naturally large pupils and so we dont dilate them but for most of us the pupil is too small to give a top quality image so drops are used.
How long do drops last?
The national recommendation is that after dilation you should not drive for six hours. Because the pupil is held open you can be dazzled by bright light sunlight or headlamps. Wearing sunglasses can help. Your pupils will return to normal after a time. Everyone is different and some will take longer than others. The drops should not cause lasting discomfort or pain; if they do then contact your GP.