Not all doctors are responsible for curing diseases. Some of them are responsible for diagnosing and treating certain diseases. This job involves looking at the inner part of a patient’s eye and checking their vision to determine if they are suffering from some type of eye disease or not. The patient can then be referred to an orthoptist or an ophthalmologist who specializes in disorders of the eye.
The doctor who is trained in this field will look at the inner part of a patient’s eye closely to determine if he or she is suffering from any type of eye disease. This is done to determine if the patient needs to be referred for treatment. The doctor will also check the patient’s eyes for signs of any health problems that may be affecting their vision.
- 1 Summary Table
- 2 Eye Doctor Definitions
- 3 Definition of Optometrist
- 4 Definition of Ophthalmologist
- 5 Similarities Between Ophthalmologist and Optometrist
- 6 Difference Between Optometrist and Ophthalmologist
- 7 How does the doctor treat eye disease?
- 8 When should you see an ophthalmologist?
- 9 When should you see an optometrist?
- 10 Can ophthalmologists prescribe glasses?
|Optometrist deals with eye problems such as macular degeneration, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, etc.||Ophthalmologists deal with diseases of the eye like glaucoma, cataract, diabetic retinopathy, etc., but not limited to these specific diseases.|
|Optometrists can work in any field that involves vision and eyewear and deal with a variety of eye diseases||Ophthalmologists can only work in hospitals and deal with medical conditions like cataract, glaucoma, etc., which affect the eyes only|
|You will need to complete a four-year program in an accredited college or university||You will need to complete a four-year program in an accredited college or university as well as completing three years of residency training|
Eye Doctor Definitions
The doctor who specializes in this field should have medical knowledge and special training that will help him or her identify any diseases that could affect the eye or vision. The doctor’s job also involves recommending procedures that can be used to maintain or improve a patient’s vision. When a patient has eye problems, the doctor will determine the best method for treatment.
But what is the difference between an optometrist and ophthalmologist? Are they similar or are they different? Can you identify the difference between them based on their appearance? If you are curious to know, this article will explain the differences between optometrist and ophthalmologist.
Before we move on to the difference between Optometrist and Ophthalmologist, let us first learn what are the two. Let’s take a look at the definitions, the similarities, and the features of these two types of medical professionals.
Definition of Optometrist
An optometrist is a medical professional who practices the field of optometry. He/she is responsible for ensuring that his/her patients are seeing the best possible eye care and are getting the right prescription eyeglasses and contact lenses. Optometrists also offer a wide range of services, including eye exams, vision therapy, and refractive surgery. In order to become an optometrist, one must first complete an undergraduate degree in science or optometry from an accredited college or university. Then, he/she must take board certification exams before being allowed to practice as an optometrist. In order to become board certified in the state where he/she plans to practice, one must have taken at least three additional exams on eye health, prescribing glasses and contact lenses for adults and children respectively. He/she may also be required to have completed four years of full-time clinical experience as well as passed an exam on clinical skills before being allowed to practice as an optometrist.
Definition of Ophthalmologist
An ophthalmologist is a medical doctor who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the eye. They learn deeply about ophthalmology. They are specialists in diseases that affect the visual system, including the retina, macular, and optic nerve. Ophthalmologists are also involved in performing surgical procedures on the eye such as Lasik. They also perform some surgeries that affect the eyes such as cataract eye surgery and removal of glaucoma medications. They also conduct research on vision, surgical treatment, and eye disorders.
Similarities Between Ophthalmologist and Optometrist
The professionals are similar in many ways. Here are the similarities between Optometrist and Ophthalmologist:
- Both are the medical professionals who diagnose and treat vision problems.
- Both are the medical professionals who deal with diseases of the eye and other parts of the body that affect vision.
- Both are trained to do a comprehensive examination of eyes and related systems in the body.
- Both have graduated from an approved school or college, and passed a board exam before practicing medicine in their respective fields.
Difference Between Optometrist and Ophthalmologist
Now that we know what these two types of medical professionals have in common, let us now take a look at what makes them different from each other:
- What they deal with
Optometrist deals with eye problems such as macular degeneration, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, etc., whereas Ophthalmologist deals with diseases of the eye like glaucoma, cataract, diabetic retinopathy, etc., but not limited to these specific diseases.
Optometrists deal with treatment for presbyopia, which is basically age-related decline in vision associated with loss of accommodation for near objects (vision care and vision correction), whereas Ophthalmologists deal with treatment for ocular and retinal diseases like cataract, macular degeneration, glaucoma, etc.
- Which one is more common?
Optometrists are much more common than Ophthalmologists. According to a study conducted by the American Academy of Optometry, approximately 80% of Americans have a family history of eye disease. This means that 80% of the population will have a chance to deal with eye problems at some point in their lives. On the other hand, ophthalmologists are relatively rarer than Optometrists, as only 3% of Americans are referred to an ophthalmologist for an eye disease or condition.
- Where they work
Optometrists can work in any field that involves vision and eyewear and deal with a variety of eye diseases, whereas Ophthalmologists can only work in hospitals and deal with medical conditions like cataract surgery, glaucoma, etc., which affects the eyes only.
- How they deal with patients
Optometrists have to diagnose eye diseases and recommend the best treatment for the patient, whereas Ophthalmologists can only prescribe the best treatment for the patient and have less or different knowledge of eye diseases.
- Their education requirements
To become an Optometrist, you will need to complete a four-year program in an accredited college or optometry school, whereas to become an Ophthalmologist, you will need to complete a four-year program in an accredited medical school or university as well as completing three years of residency training. However, both these educational programs are highly respected by their respective medical associations and offer excellent career opportunities. Some opticians need an ophthalmic dispensing certificate.
How does the doctor treat eye disease?
The doctor will determine if the patient needs to be referred for treatment by looking at their eyes and checking for signs of health problems. This is done by looking at the patient’s eyes and checking for signs of eye disease. The eye care professionals will then check the patient’s eyes for signs of any health problems that may be affecting their vision.
After the examination, the doctor will determine if they need to refer the patient to an ophthalmologist or an orthopedist. The ophthalmologist or orthopedist will look at the patient’s eye and check their vision as well as their other senses. They will also determine if they need treatment from this specialist or not. After treatment, they will prescribe medications and tell them how often they need to come back for checkups and tests in order to make sure that there are no complications with the treatment plan that they have set up for the patient.
When should you see an ophthalmologist?
An ophthalmologist is a medical doctor who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of eye diseases. The majority of ophthalmologists work in hospitals, but some also work in private practice. The main reason why most people go to ophthalmologists is that they are having problems with their vision.
If you have any problems with your vision, you should visit an ophthalmologist to determine the cause of your problem and get a prescription for glasses or contact lenses. If you have questions about your vision, it is important that you visit an ophthalmologist as soon as possible so that they can determine what is causing your problem and provide you with the proper treatment.
When should you see an optometrist?
If you have some eye problems, you can see an optometrist to get a proper diagnosis. This is the same thing that you would do if you have any type of eye disease. For example, if you are suffering from any type of eye problem, such as a dry eye, cornea disease or cataract, then you should see a doctor of optometry for proper healthcare. With the right levels of training many optometrists also offer pediatric routine eye exams as a subspecialty. Healthcare professionals for primary eye care are able to address issues like corneal diseases or strabismus depending of the types of eye doctors. Ask your providers or refer to the American Academy of Ophthalmology for more information.
Can ophthalmologists prescribe glasses?
Yes, ophthalmologists can prescribe glasses. But only for those patients who are considered legally blind or have some other vision impairment. Patients who are not legally blind will not be able to be prescribed glasses by an ophthalmologist. This is because the law requires that anyone who wants to be prescribed glasses must first be tested by an optometrist.
Optometrists are trained to determine if a patient needs to wear glasses or not. If the optometrist determines that the patient needs glasses, eyeglass lenses, corrective lenses, vision test, he or she will refer the patient to an ophthalmologist for treatment. The ophthalmologist will then perform surgical eye care on the patient’s eyes and prescribe him or her with a pair of prescription glasses which he or she can have better eye conditions.