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Manchester Foundation
Trust Charity

OCT A Eye Scanner

Manchester Royal Eye Hospital

Hospital becomes first in UK to use new eye scanner

Manchester Royal Eye Hospital became the first in the UK to use a new eye scanner in a patient setting. The Widefield OCT A machine from Canon was purchased through charitable funds and for many patients, means a more immediate and non-invasive scan. Patients were delighted to see the equipment when it started being used in the hospital in 2023.

Many Manchester Royal Eye Hospital patients are now able to have a more immediate and non-invasive scan on their eyes, thanks to charitable funds.

Charitable funds were used to purchase the Widefield OCT A machine from Canon, making Manchester Royal Eye Hospital the first in the UK to use the new scanner when it arrived in 2023.

The biggest cause of blindness in both young and older patients is disease of the retina, the light receptive layer on the inside of the eye. Disease here causes blindness in conditions such as diabetes and macular degeneration.

Previously, in order to detect diseases of the retina, patients had to undergo a procedure called a fluorescein angiography (FFA) which requires dye to be injected into the vein for the scan. The OCT A equipment means the eye can be scanned without the need for needles, making a more comfortable and quicker experience for patients.

Professor of Ophthalmology and Consultant Ophthalmologist, Tariq Aslam commented: “We are delighted to be the first in the UK to utilise this ultra-wide field OCT Angiography machine in a patient facing setting. With this new equipment we can improve patient care by offering immediate scans as simple as taking a picture to look for potentially blinding disease where we would otherwise need to book patients for invasive procedures involving intravenous needles and dyes. This technology will help our clinicians to make rapid diagnoses of many conditions and prevent and treat the most common forms of sight loss.”

Patients at Manchester Royal Eye Hospital were delighted the equipment meant they could have a better experience during appointments.

Janet Kelly from Ashton-under-Lyne, has been diagnosed with a proliferative retinopathy, which is caused by abnormal new blood vessels that grow on the surface of her eye. She previously had an FFA scan and although the scan went fine, the dye made her feel sick.

After having a scan with the hospital’s new OCT A, she said: “Having the dye via a cannular made me anxious as it’s never easy getting cannulas in me, so that just made the FFA scan more of a stressful thing.

“Being able to have the OCT A scan on the same day as my appointment was great as it meant not having to arrange my daughter to bring me another time. It was also much more comfortable and quicker.”

John Breheny from Wythenshawe has type 2 diabetes and in 2022 he started losing his sight. John has had an FFA scan before and understands how the OCT A scan is much better for those who might find the FFA uncomfortable or stressful.

He said: “If you are nervous or scared about needles then this equipment is a Godsend.”

“If you are nervous or scared about needles then this equipment is a Godsend.”

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