Specialized Testing

Specialized Vision Testing

When you rely on your sight more than any other sense, it makes sense to pick the best professional to help you keep your eyes and vision as healthy and clear as possible. That is our commitment to you, and the best way for us to understand your eye health and provide the quality care that you deserve is to ensure that we learn everything that there is to know about your eyes. To do this, we offer a specialized vision testing program that involves a comprehensive assessment of your vision and the health of your eyes.

As part of our specialized vision testing program, we are pleased to be able to offer patients a number of highly accurate and beneficial types of medical eye testing. These include the following:

Automated Visual Field Testing

Your visual field is how wide of an area you can see when you fix your focus on a central point. A visual field test is used to determine if you have any blind spots in your vision, particularly in the peripheries aka the edges of your sight. It can be particularly helpful in detecting signs of glaucoma, since loss of peripheral vision tends to be one of the first symptoms of the condition. However, there are also other eye disorders that can cause peripheral vision loss and blind spots, including diseases of the retina.

The procedure for automated visual field testing is non-invasive and completely painless.

Heidelberg Retinal Tomography (HRT)

Heidelberg Retinal Tomography, also known as HRT, is a diagnostic test that involves comprehensive 3D images being taken of the optic nerve and surrounding retina so that their health and condition can be evaluated. It is most often used in the identification and treatment of retinal diseases including glaucoma.

Again, the procedure for Heidelberg Retinal Tomography is non-invasive as the images are taken using a special laser which is focused on to the surface of the optic nerve.

Corneal Topography

Also known as photokeratoscopy, corneal topography is a medical imaging technique that maps the surface curvature of the cornea, which is the transparent, dome-shaped layer forming the front of the eye. The cornea plays an essential role in refracting light that enters the eye so that we can see. If the curvature or symmetry of the cornea is less than optimal, the light will not hit the retina perfectly and the patient will not be able to see clearly. In many instances, the imperfection of the cornea is significant enough to warrant the patient needing prescription lenses in contacts or glasses to obtain clear vision.

Corneal topography is a non-invasive computerized test that produces a detailed, visual description of the shape and power of the cornea which can be used to assess the condition of the corneal surface as well as diagnose, monitor and treat various eye conditions.


Pachymetery is a simple, painless test that measures the thickness of the cornea. This is important since a number of medical and ocular conditions, including Fuch’s Dystrophy, are characterized by increased fluid in the cornea which can cause swelling and an increase in overall thickness. Pachymetry has also become important in identifying glaucoma since the disease occurs due to elevated intraocular pressure which can also cause corneal swelling.

Schirmer’s Test

Sometimes known as the ‘dry eye test’, a Schirmer’s test is an evaluation which is performed to determine if your eyes are producing enough tear film to keep them moist. Dry eye syndrome is a very common problem, particularly amongst patients who spend a great deal of time using computers/screens or working in dry and/or dusty environments. Dry eye syndrome can also have some medical causes. A Schirmer’s test is very simple and involves a small piece of filter paper being placed inside the lower lids of both eyes to measure how much fluid is present. It only takes around 5 minutes and is completely painless.

Color Testing

Color testing is used to determine your ability to tell the difference among colors and can enable us to make an accurate diagnosis of color blindness. Contrary to popular belief, patients who are color-blind rarely only see in black and white. Instead, they simply have difficulties differentiating between certain colors. This can make particular aspects of life tricky and may make it hard to carry out some jobs. If a diagnosis of color blindness, also known as color vision deficiency, is made, it may be possible for you to receive glasses to correct your vision.

If you would like to learn more about any of specialized vision testing assessments, or if you would like to book an evaluation with our experienced eye care team, please contact our offices in West Des Moines, IA today by calling (515) 225-6447.