I had my first a few months ago as a result of an exam by my principle eye doctor who referred me to a retina specialist as a precaution (she didn’t think what she saw was was particularly worrisome). I’ve had retinal pictures taken, on and off, since the start of the '90s; I was getting them done regularly in the UK 30 years ago but that pretty much stopped when I emigrated to the US and, indeed, the pictures I brought with me got lost in the records.
I started doing the Optos stuff as soon as my PED had it available, I think at least 5 years ago but not more than 10; I had to pay for it myself at that time but the canny Scottish company in question made it pretty cheap, $25 I think.
I’m in accord with my original endo, Dr Henderson, who started me on this. He was (I hope is) a T1D too and he inspired enormous trust in me. There is no centralized record keeping in the US of course and the centralization of records was in its infancy in the UK at the time, but the enormous importance of this to those of us with chronic conditions can’t be overemphasized. The Optos images, or, indeed, the 35mm film I brought from the UK, show the changes (you’ve seen the doc switching the Optos images, right?) both over the short term (since the last visit) and the long (since my first retinal image, aargh, someone lost it).
The 3D imaging is an extra dimension to this; the doc can look through your eyeball as though it had been sliced on a microtome. I can only imagine that the value to us of those images over the years are potentially enormous. At present, 47 years into T1D, I’m looking at something near to the fovea and, I think, the optic nerve which might be a problem; next check in February.
The other curious experience that came out of this was having a doc squeeze my eyeball quite hard (perceptually). Interesting.