Many ophthalmologists and optometrists work together to provide comprehensive eye care for their patients. An optometrist is often the best option for contact lens wearers. When you have blurred vision, eye pain, or “floaters,” it's OK to see an optometrist or ophthalmologist. An optometrist is an ophthalmologist who can examine, diagnose, and treat your eyes.
An ophthalmologist is a doctor who can perform medical and surgical interventions for eye conditions. An optician is a professional who can help place glasses, contact lenses, and other vision correction devices. Optometrists and ophthalmologists work together to ensure you have healthy eyes and who to go to depends on what you need. For a general eye exam and eyeglass prescriptions, an optometrist is the right place to start.
Optometrists can refer you to an ophthalmologist if you need specialized care or surgery. This collaboration can be cost-effective and provide optimal care for your eyes. ODs are the top providers of eye care. Optometrist training is primarily designed for routine eye care and vision.
Most people don't need the specialized medical care or eye surgery provided by an ophthalmologist. An ophthalmologist is an ophthalmologist with the title of Doctor of Medicine (MD) or Doctor of Osteopath (DO). Much of the care provided by an ophthalmologist intersects with the services of an optometrist. While they can provide routine eye care, prescribe glasses and contact lenses, and prescribe medications, most ophthalmologists are surgeons who specialize in a particular part of the eye or a disease.
For example, they may specialize in cataracts and glaucoma, while others specialize in retinal surgery. Where you live and whether or not you have health care coverage can also influence whether you see an optometrist or ophthalmologist for your eye health. If your eyes are healthy and you simply need an exam to get glasses, you can schedule an appointment with an ophthalmologist or optometrist. A study found that by working together, ophthalmologists and optometrists can use healthcare resources more intelligently, benefiting everyone.
You should see your optometrist for general eye care, including eye exams, vision correction, contact lens and eyeglass interventions. In addition to primary eye care, the medical optometrist also plays an important role in general health care. Some receive specialized training, but most optometrists go into practice after finishing their training. Unlike optometrists, ophthalmologists are doctors (MD) or osteopaths (DO) who specialize in eye health and eye care.
For example, “an ophthalmologist can refer a patient with difficult or complicated refraction to an optometrist who can provide careful measurement of the glasses” explained Dr. Like optometrists, they also work as educators to train optometry and ophthalmology students or serve in the military to provide eye care. If you are interested in undergoing vision correction surgery such as LASIK or PRK it should be performed by an ophthalmologist; although most eye surgeons work closely with optometrists for pre- and post-operative screening and care of surgical patients. Studies have shown that care can be more appropriate and cost-effective when optometrists and ophthalmologists work together.
A pediatric ophthalmologist, also called a children's ophthalmologist or children's ophthalmologist, can be an optometrist or an ophthalmologist. A medical optometrist is a doctor of optometry who has chosen to focus exclusively on providing eye medical care to ensure the total visual and eye health of his patients. That's why you should make a visit to a medical optometrist every year part of your regular health routines for optimal health.