A buyer's guide to OCT

Peter Ivins and Craig McArthur share their tips on what to look for in optical coherence tomography equipment


Knowing what factors to prioritise when purchasing an optical coherence tomography (OCT) device was the focus of a presentation by Peter Ivins and Craig McArthur at 100% Optical (6–8 February, ExCeL London).

During their presentation Everything you need to know about OCT: a buyer’s guide, Mr Ivins emphasised that having an OCT gave optometrists an extra level of confidence in their clinical decisions.

“From a clinical point of view, the OCT has been the biggest clinical development in the past 30 years without a doubt,” he highlighted.

The speakers detailed the basic principles behind OCT, as well as harnessing the technology for imaging the anterior eye and using OCT in optic nerve, macular and vitreo-retinal disorders.

A mix of clinical, financial, management and marketing factors should drive a practitioner’s decision when purchasing an OCT, Mr McArthur emphasised.

Questions that might be asked included what volume of patients would be using the service, how much space was in the practice, whether the OCT would be in a dedicated room, and what instruments the practice had already.

Practitioners were not just buying a box, but a system, Mr Ivins highlighted.

“It’s not just as simple as going out there thinking, ‘Which is the best box? What is the best price?’.”

The focus should not be on cost, but on how an OCT would improve clinical care, he emphasised.

Practitioners also had to consider how they would turn the OCT in to a new source of revenue, Mr Ivins added.

“You’ve got to commercialise it,” he concluded.