These are our patients’ most Frequently Asked Questions. If you need more information, let us know!
What is a comprehensive medical eye exam?
It’s a thorough eye examination checking for eye conditions (such as corneal problems, cataracts, glaucoma, and age-related macular degeneration) and for signs of systemic diseases such as diabetes and lupus that can appear in the eyes.
Do you do routine checkups for glasses or contact lenses?
Our optometrist will be happy to take care of your vision prescription needs. (Our ophthalmologists do not do routine exams solely for the purpose of prescribing glasses or contacts.) If you need to schedule an appointment only to obtain a vision prescription, you can schedule with our optometrist Dr. Chen, who currently accepts EyeMed, Davis Vision, and March Vision plans. If our optometrist finds anything suggesting a medical problem with your eyes, he will refer you to one of our ophthalmologists.
What's the difference between an optometrist and an ophthalmologist?
After graduating from college, an optometrist completes a four-year Doctor of Optometry program. Optometrists prescribe glasses and contact lenses and check the health of the eye. An ophthalmologist is a medical doctor who went to medical school after college and then did a four- year residency specializing in ophthalmology. Ophthalmologists diagnose and treat eye diseases; most also perform eye surgery.
How long does a comprehensive medical eye exam take?
A comprehensive medical eye exam may take from 60 to 90 minutes. It involves dilating the patient’s pupils, which requires instilling eyedrops that can take 15 to 30 minutes to take effect. Also done are a visual acuity test, a glaucoma test, and an ophthalmoscopic exam of the front and back of the eye as well as any additional testing required.
What is the purpose of dilation?
The dilating drops prevent the pupil from constricting (narrowing) in response to light, which is the pupil’s natural reaction. This allows the doctor to examine the inside of the eye more thoroughly; this includes the periphery (outer edges), where some types of diseases and conditions are more common.
How long do dilating drops last?
Typically 4 to 6 hours.
Will I be able to drive after dilation?
Most people can drive after dilation but require sunglasses, since the pupils cannot constrict in bright light. For ost people, distance vision isn’t usually affected, but if you are farsighted, you may have a more difficult time. If you’re feeling uncomfortable after dilation and examination, we recommend that you wait in the waiting room or your car before driving. The vision effect of the dilation usually wears off after about an hour, but the pupils remain dilated for a few more hours, so sunglasses are necessary outdoors.
What surgeries are performed in the office?
The in-office surgeries we can do in the office include chalazion drainage, removal of small lesions or cysts on eyelid skin, corneal foreign body removals, and certain types of laser procedures for glaucoma, diabetes, and after cataract surgery.
What surgeries are performed in an operating room?
These include cataract surgery, laser vision correction, and pterygium removal and are performed using sterile procedures in an operating room at a surgical facility.
In which facilities do you perform surgeries?
Our patients have their surgeries at Adventist HealthCare Shady Grove Medical Center, Montgomery Surgery Center, and Frederick Surgical Center.
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