Bedside ultrasonography is increasingly being used in the ED to examine the eye. For instance, it can be used to detect a retinal detachment, vitreous hemorrhage, and high intracranial pressure. The technique involves applying ultrasound gel on the patient’s closed eyelid. A generous amount of gel should be used to minimize the amount of direct pressure applied on the patient’s eye by the ultrasound probe.
Trick of the Trade
Apply a transparent tegaderm dressing over the patient’s closed eyelid. 1 This provides an addition barrier between the gel and the patient’s eye without compromising ultrasound image quality.
The trade-off with this trick, I find, is that while the patient’s skin doesn’t contact the gel, the removal of the tegaderm adhesive may peel off some eye makeup or a few eyelashes! Pick your poison.