Testing & Diagnosis for Eye Injuries in Children

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How are eye injuries diagnosed?

Some eye injuries go undetected because no symptoms are present. When an eye injury is suspected, a physician should be consulted. A physician can usually locate foreign matter in the eye by examining it with a magnifying glass under good light. If no foreign matter is present, your child's eyes and surrounding area will be examined to determine the presence and possible seriousness of an injury. During the examination, anesthetic eye drops may be administered to lessen eye pain.

To help locate scratches and other small injuries, the eye is stained with an orange dye called fluorescein. This dye appears bright yellow under a blue examining light; with it, highlighted scratches and scrapes on the eye can be detected.

More serious eye injuries may involve imaging studies such as x-ray or computerized tomography scans. For more information on how eye injuries are diagnosed, refer to the specific injury listed under Related Conditions and Treatments.

We are grateful to have been ranked #1 on U.S. News & World Report's list of the best children's hospitals in the nation for the third year in a row, an honor we could not have achieved without the patients and families who inspire us to do our very best for them. Thanks to you, Boston Children's is a place where we can write the greatest children's stories ever told.”
- Sandra L. Fenwick, President and CEO

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