Point-of-care ultrasound for the evaluation of non-traumatic visual disturbances in the emergency department: The VIGMO protocol

Am J Emerg Med. 2019 Aug;37(8):1547-1553. doi: 10.1016/j.ajem.2019.04.049. Epub 2019 May 11.


Objectives: To establish a standardized approach for the rapid and accurate identification of non-traumatic, ophthalmologic pathology in patients with eye complaints in the emergency department.

Methods: In this detailed protocol we offer an easy, reproducible method for the use of ocular point-of-care ultrasound (POCUS) in helping practitioners identify and distinguish between common eye pathology encountered in the emergency setting: retinal detachment, vitreous detachment, vitreous hemorrhage, optic nerve pathology, and syneresis.

Conclusions: This protocol can help identify patients that may need urgent ophthalmology consultation those that can follow-up on an outpatient, and those that may need additional emergent testing.

Keywords: Eye ultrasound; Ultrasound for optic nerve pathology; Ultrasound for retinal detachment; Ultrasound for vitreous detachment; Ultrasound for vitreous hemorrhage.

MeSH terms

  • Clinical Protocols
  • Emergency Service, Hospital
  • Eye / diagnostic imaging*
  • Eye Diseases / diagnostic imaging*
  • Humans
  • Optic Nerve / diagnostic imaging
  • Optic Nerve / pathology
  • Point-of-Care Systems*
  • Retinal Detachment / diagnostic imaging
  • Ultrasonography / methods*
  • Vitreous Detachment / diagnostic imaging
  • Vitreous Hemorrhage / diagnostic imaging