If your doctor finds an abnormality and suspects the wet form of
macular degeneration (abnormal blood vessels), a special test called
fluorescein angiography will be done. To do the test, dye is injected
into a vein in the arm. The dye travels through the body including the
eyes. With a special camera (not X-ray), a series of photographs of the
retina is taken as the dye passes through it.
The photographs show what changes have occurred in the retina and where
those changes are located. Fluorescein angiography is necessary if the
doctor thinks there is a chance that the patient could benefit from
laser treatment. The photographs provide a kind of map that the doctor
uses during laser treatment. Fluorescein angiography is also usually
done a few weeks following laser treatment to be sure that the laser has
destroyed the abnormal blood vessels.
There is another photographic test called indocyanine green angiography.
This test may give additional information that may be helpful if laser
treatment is to be done.