#13: Digital Fundus Photography

July 11, 2016

The concept of fundus photography dates back to the late 19th-early 20th centuries, when the first rudimentary images of the fundus were captured. However, it wasn’t until the early 1990s when digitalization of fundus photography was properly developed and described.

The concept of fundus photography dates back to the late 19th-early 20th centuries, when the first rudimentary images of the fundus were captured. However, it wasn’t until the early 1990s when digitalization of fundus photography was properly developed and described.

Geographic atrophy as seen in a 55o BluePeak fundus autofluorescence image acquired with SPECTRALIS®

The advantages of digital fundus photography vs. traditional imaging are many, including the ease and speed of access to images, archiving and transmission capabilities, and improved image resolution. Many current platforms that include digital fundus photography automatically store images that can be compared over time and even shared with clinicians at remote sites.

Ultra-wide field fundus imaging can now capture more than 100º view of the retina, far superior to the 30o view commonly offered through standard fundus photography. Digital fundus photography has been shown to be useful in identifying subtle neovascularization and macular edema that may not be apparent through standard processes.

One of the newest alternatives to digital fundus photography is confocal scanning laser ophthalmoscopy (cSLO), a technology that uses laser light instead of a bright flash of white light to illuminate the retina. By shining light on an object and then capturing the reflected light through a pinhole, cSLO can produce high-contrast images that are more clearly defined than those produced by conventional fundus cameras. Primary benefits of cSLO include improved image quality, patient comfort, video capability, and effective imaging of patients who do not dilate well, including diabetics.