What is Included in a Comprehensive Eye Exam

People always speak about being healthy and performing various things to achieve those health goals. But, they often forget the health of their eyes. Like every other body part, eyes are vulnerable to various kinds of problems too. One needs to undergo a proper eye exam to understand the problems with their eyes and treat them accordingly.

Eyes are complex organs and need regular check-ups. A comprehensive eye exam helps to detect eye diseases and disorders like glaucoma, cataracts, diabetic retinopathy and many others, which a normal vision test does not detect. Here are some eye tests that you may encounter during a comprehensive eye exam.

Visual Activity Test


Visual activity is one of the first and most common tests used by your optometrist to test the vision of your eye. The test measures your vision using the Snellen Eye Chart. This chart is placed at a certain distance and then the patient is asked to read the letters written on it. The results are in form of a ratio. It compares your vision with the vision of an average person.

For example, if your ratio is 20/40, that means your vision can reach only 20 feet compared to an average person whose vision reaches 40 feet.

Cover Test

Usually done for children, a cover eye exam is used to check the eye alignment of the patient. The test uses either black or a transparent occlude paddle to cover the eye. The patient needs to focus on an object and then covering one eye, the optometrist assesses if the uncovered eye moves to the fixation target. The process is repeated with objects placed at different distances with the paddle on each eye alternately. This helps in identifying strabismus, binocular vision or amblyopia problems.


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The refraction test is used to identify the prescription for your lens. A person who does not have 20/20 ratio of vision is said to have a refractive error. During the eye exam, the optometrist uses a phoropter and uses a series lenses on your eyes to figure out the one that allows you to see best. You need to select the lens which gives you a clear vision of the object in front of you. This way, the doctor determines the level of myopia, hyperopia, astigmatism, and presbyopia in you.

Ocular Motility Testing

This test is performed by the optometrist to determine the movement of your eyes. This eye exam is used to see how well your eyes can capture the moving object at varied speed. Smooth and quick eye movements are captured by keeping your head still and making your eyes move to see the object moving from one position to another, or looking at the objects placed at some distance apart from each other.

Other eye exams include retinoscopy, autorefractors, tonometry and more. To learn more about the details of various tests, schedule an appointment with an expert optometrist.