An eye angiogram uses fluorescein dye and a camera to take pictures
and evaluate the blood flow through the vessels in the back of the eye (retina).
See a picture of the
structures of the eye .
During an eye angiogram, the dye is injected
into a vein in your arm. Once injected, it takes about 10 to 15 seconds to
circulate through your body. As the dye enters the blood vessels in your eyes,
a series of photos are taken to chart the dye's progress. More pictures are
taken after most of the dye has passed through your eyes to see if any of it
has leaked out of the blood vessels. Any dye that leaks out of the blood
vessels will color the tissues and fluid in the eye. Filters in the camera
allow the areas colored by the dye to show up in the photos.
angiogram procedures, an eye angiogram is not an
X-ray procedure, so you are not exposed to any
Why It Is Done
An eye angiogram is done to:
- Confirm the presence of abnormal blood vessels
in or under the retina.
- Check for and locate leaking blood vessels
in the retina, especially if you have symptoms that suggest damage to or
swelling of the retina, such as blurred or distorted vision. This is often
diabetic retinopathy or
- Help find
inflammation or tumors in the eye.
- Locate the precise areas of the
retina that need treatment prior to laser eye surgery.
- Help find
blockage in the blood vessels that feed or drain blood from the retina (retinal
arteries and veins).
How To Prepare
If you wear contact lenses, remove them
before the test. After the test, do not put soft contact lenses back in your
eyes for at least 4 hours because the contacts may become stained from the dye
used for the test.
Before the test, tell your doctor if
- Have ever had an
allergic reaction to X-ray
contrast materials, iodine (which is present in
indocyanine green dye), fluorescein, or dilating eyedrops.
- Have a
closed-angle glaucoma. You may need to delay doses of
certain eyedrops until after the test. The doctor also may not use dilating
eyedrops or may use different eyedrops before the test.
- Are taking
any prescription or over-the-counter medicines.
- Are or might be
pregnant or are breast-feeding. Most doctors discourage the use of this test
during pregnancy, especially during the first 3 months, and while a woman is
Talk to your doctor about any concerns you have regarding
the need for the test, its risks, how it will be done, or what the results may
mean. To help you understand the importance of this test, fill out the
medical test information form(What is a PDF document?).
After the test:
- Your vision may be blurred for up to 12
- You should not drive until the effects of the dilating
eyedrops wear off. Arrange for someone to drive you home.
should wear sunglasses until your
pupils return to normal size. Bright light and
sunshine may hurt your eyes.