Glossary Of Terms

Angiography
Medical imaging technique used to visualize the inside of blood vessels and organs of the body, including the eye.CataractsClouding of the naturally clear lens in the eye.

Choroid
layer of blood vessels between the retina and sclera.

Conjunctiva
Thin, transparent tissue that covers the outside of the eye.

Cornea
The clear outer part of the eye’s focusing system located at the front of the eye.

Diabetic retinopathy
Damage to blood vessels of the retina that occurs with diabetes. Symptoms include: blindness, blurred vision, floaters, shadows or missing areas of vision.

Fluorescein angiography (FA)
A technique to examine the circulation of the retina using a dye tracing method.

Fundus camera
Specialized low-power microscope attached to a camera that photographs the posterior pole inside of the eye.

Ganglion Cell Complex
The three innermost retinal layers: the nerve fiber layer, the ganglion cell layer, and the inner plexiform layer.

Glaucoma
A group of disorders that lead to damage of the optic nerve. 

ICGA
Indocyanine Green Angiography is a technique similar to FA, but uses Indocyanine Green dye, which allows visualization of choroidal vessels.

Intraretinal hemorrhages
Bleeding inside the retina.

Iris
The colored part of the eye that regulates the amount of light entering the eye.

Ischemia
Restriction in blood supply.

Lens
A clear part of the eye behind the iris that helps to focus light, or an image, on the retina.

Macula
The small sensitive area of the retina that gives central vision.

Macular edema
Swelling of the macula.

Microaneurysms
Sac-like out-pouching of weakened capillaries (the smallest blood vessel of the body).

Microvascular
Pertaining to the smaller, finer blood vessels of the body.

Neovascularization
Abnormal or excessive formation of blood vessels.

Ophthalmoscope
An instrument used in examining the interior of the eye.

Ophthalmologist
A medical doctor (MD) who specializes in eye health and vision care. An ophthalmologist diagnoses and treats all eye diseases, performs eye surgery and prescribes and fits eyeglasses and contact lenses to correct vision problems.

Optic Nerve
Transmits visual information from the retina to the brain.

Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT)
Generates high-resolution, cross-sectional and three-dimensional (3D) images of the retina, optic disc and anterior segment to provide information that aids in the diagnosis and management of a range of ocular diseases.

Optical Coherence Tomography Angiography (OCTA)
New, non-invasive approach to visualizing retinal vasculature that does not require the use of contrast dye.

Optometrist
Healthcare professional who provides primary vision care ranging from sight testing and correction with glasses and contact lenses to the diagnosis, treatment, and management of vision changes.

Pan-retinal photocoagulation
A procedure that will stop the vessels on the retina from growing and leaking.

Pupil
The opening at the center of the iris. The iris adjusts the size of the pupil and controls the amount of light that can enter the eye.

Retina
A delicate, multilayered, light-sensitive membrane lining the inner eyeball that connects to the brain through the optic nerve.

Sclera
Also called the white of the eye, this outer layer adds strength to the eye due to its flexibility and durability.

Vascular permeability
The ability of a blood vessel to allow for the flow of small molecules in and out of the vessel.

Vitrectomy
Surgical removal of the vitreous.

Vitreous
A clear gel that fills the inside of the eye.