This is a procedure done for examining the retina with a light attached to a headband, in addition to a small handheld lens. It provides a wider view of the inside of the eye. Furthermore, it allows a better view of the fundus of the eye, even if the lens is cataractous.
It is used to detect and evaluate symptoms of retinal detachment like retinal holes and lattices in the extreme periphery of retina.
In patients with diabetes mellitus, regular ophthalmoscopic eye examinations (once every 6 months to 1 year) are important to screen for diabetic retinopathy as visual loss due to diabetes can be prevented by retinal laser treatment if retinopathy is spotted early.
To allow for better inspection of fundus (retina) through the pupil, which constricts because of light from the ophthalmoscope, it is desirable to dilate the pupil by a mydriatic drops like tropicamide.Vision becomes mildly hazy for distance for few hours after putting dilating eye drops and patients are advised not to drive themselves.