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Intraocular pressure measurement in the emergency room
  1. Asaf Achiron1,2,
  2. Khamis Arbid3,
  3. Romi Noy Achiron2,
  4. Elisha Bartov1,2
  1. 1Department of Ophthalmology, The Edith Wolfson Medical Center, Holon, Israel
  2. 2Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel
  3. 3Emergency Department, Russells Hall Hospital, Dudley, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Asaf Achiron, Department of Ophthalmology, The Edith Wolfson Medical Center, Holon 58100, Israel; achironasaf{at}

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Intraocular pressure (IOP) assessment is a valuable skill for any physician working in the emergency room. Measuring the IOP digitally (when the examiner uses his fingers to evaluate a patient's IOP) or with a simple inexpensive tonometer can aid in the diagnosis of vision-threatening ocular conditions (figures 1 and 2). The following case illustrates the usefulness of this examination in the workup of a young patient presenting with severe headache.

Figure 1

Measuring the intraocular pressure using digital examination. The aim of this technique is to assess the force required to indent the orbital wall. The patient is asked to shut his eyes and look down. Gentle pressure is applied alternately to the superior part of the lid by both index fingers.2

Figure 2

This rebound tonometer contains a lightweight disposable probe that measures the intraocular pressure (IOP) by a brief contact with the …

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  • Contributors AA designed, AA, KA and RNA drafted and EB supervised this manuscript.

  • Competing interests None.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.