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Eye Examination Photograph – Slit Lamp

Sat, May 26, 2007

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This is a photograph shot inside an operating room. There was no operation in progress during or after the image was photographed. However, recipe an examination is quite a daunting process for an ophthalmologist, viagra sale when the patient is an infant. Infants obviously tend to get scared of lights being shined into their eyes by strangers!

Anyway, sick as a photographer in an OR, it is a very different experience from shooting in your own studio. For one thing, a medical photographer has to come to terms with the fact that his assignment is NOT the most important work going on at any given minute, and the photographer does have to take the backseat. By this, I do not mean to imply an ego hassle. The fact is, that a photographer needs to understand that he does not have the freedom to set up lighting conditions to his preference. Also, the photographer rarely gets the opportunity to get a posed shot. To put it in a nutshell, a medical photographer needs to have a quick mind, a good versatile on camera flash and an adjusting attitude.

The attached image shows the slit lamp examination of the eye of an infant. The child is sedated before the examination, so as to allow the ophthalmologist enough freedom to perform tests. When the doctor focused the slit lamp on the eye, it provided the right opportunity to shoot an image that would depict the procedure. The slit lamp light on the eye could easily have been lost if a fast shutter speed was used. Of course, a flash WAS used to shoot the image. However, it was bounced off a wall so as to soften the light. Also, the image was slightly underexposed to allow for the slit lamp light to come through. The flash lasts for a fraction of a second, and speeds as high as 1/250 second are enough to sync the shutter with the flash. The flash duration is less than 1/1000 of a second by the way. Now, balancing flash light with ambient light is the mark of a good photographer, be it medical imaging or any other indoor/outdoor photograph. In this case, a slow shutter speed was used to be able to capture the light on the eye.

It is very important for a photographer to keep a cool head in a situation as this. The infant was anesthetized just for a few minutes, so the doctors work deftly on their tests. There are not many second chances if you miss a good image in a place like this, so knowing your equipment like the back of your hand does help. You wouldn’t want to use a new camera/flash model in an OR, just as a good hunter wouldn’t go after the prize catch with a new rifle! Lastly, when in doubt, shoot extra. That goes in terms of number of shits as well as the composition. You can always crop later!

About The Author

Siddhartha Mudaliar, photographer, INDIA

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