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Whats the difference between Optometrists and Opthalmologists?

A common misconception regarding optometrists is that optometrists perform routine eye exams to check for glasses only. This is not the case, according to the OAO an optometrist examines patients in order to diagnose, treat, manage, and prevent diseases and disorders of the eye, vision system, and its related structures. Optometrists regularly fit and adjust eyeglasses, contact lenses, or subnormal vision devices for patients, but they are also concerned with the health of the eye and are able to recognize when a patient has a visual issue that needs to be treated by an Ophthalmologist. An Ophthalmologist is a medical doctor that specializes in specific areas of the eye. These specialists perform medical and surgical procedures to help treat and prevent diseases and conditions of the eye. To see an ophthalmologist the patient will require a referral from an optometrist. This allows patients to see the correct doctor right away without having multiple appointments. The difference has and continues to be an area of confusion for many patients, but the importance of each doctor for the prevention and treatment of eye conditions are essential.

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