How often should I get an eye exam?
For routine vision exams, a glasses prescription expires after 12 months as well as a contact lens prescription. This is generally considered as the standard of care to evaluate vision and routine eye health annually. If you are at high risk for eye disease or have been diagnosed with one, then dilated exams and more frequent checks are recommended.
What can I expect during my appointment?
When an appointment is scheduled, our receptionists try to collect insurance information and the reason for your visit to direct your exam appropriately whether it is routine vision, comprehensive medical and if contact lens fitting is necessary.
A routine vision exam includes testing your vision and the need for eyeglasses. We have certified technicians trained to screen for vision disorders and ocular diseases. These screening tests are performed before the doctor comes in the room. The doctor or a certified technician will “refract” or measure your new glasses prescription.
Drops are used to numb the eyes so we can check your intraocular pressure which is a glaucoma screening. All new patients are dilated to screen for ocular diseases. If you are a new patient, please come prepared to be light sensitive outside and have blurry near vision for a few hours after the exam. Some patients like to bring a driver for their dilated exam and some like to shop for glasses ahead of time. Dilation takes 15-20 minutes to take effect. This allows a good view of the retina and stops near focus to allow for a more accurate measurement of a glasses prescription when needed. A complete dilated vision or comprehensive medical exam takes up to 90 minutes, depending on testing needs.
Return routine vision patients may not be dilated unless there is a medical reason the doctor feels this is necessary. A non-dilated exam takes approximately 45 minutes from check-in to check-out. A contact lens exam takes longer depending on the complexity of the fit. And, of course, how long you take to shop for glasses is at your luxury!
What’s the difference between a routine vision exam and a medical eye exam?
During a routine vision exam, glasses or contact lens measurements are taken and a medical screening is performed.
During a medical exam, a glasses prescription is not included and costs an extra fee if requested. However, a more thorough medical assessment of the eyes occurs to diagnose and treat disease. Extra tests such as OCT scan of the macula or optic nerve or retinal photos can be performed. Dry eyes, cataracts, diabetes, glaucoma, and macular diseases are treated and followed during these visits. Our office has special testing equipment that allows us to follow ocular diseases such as macular degeneration patients and glaucoma patients and prevent vision loss by aggressive treatment and knowledgeable referrals.
Will you dilate my eyes during my exam?
We dilate all new patients and annually for medical exams if you have diabetes, cataracts, or any macular disease. Vision exams are dilated less often unless recommended by your doctor.
What is the difference between an ophthalmologist and an optometrist?
An ophthalmologist is a medical doctor who went to medical school, then received a six year residency specializing in ophthalmology. They can do eye surgeries and tend to specialize in different parts of the eye. Eye Care Oklahoma has three ophthalmologists.
Darrell Pickard, M.D. is a board-certified ophthalmologist and cataract and LASIK surgeon. He specializes in advanced cataract surgery, lens implants, and refractive surgery, including LASIK eye surgery and PRK.
Joshua Jones, M.D. is an ophthalmologist who performs cataract surgery, glaucoma and oculoplastic surgery.
Jay Leemaster, M.D. is a general ophthalmologist specializing in cataract surgery.
An optometrist is an eye doctor that went through a four year doctorate program specializing in eye care. Optometrists don’t perform extensive surgeries, although there are some minor procedures they can perform. The optometrists at Eye Care Oklahoma., Beth Burkhart, O.D., Taran Lasater, O.D., Michael Wiles, O.D., and Natalie McCord, O.D. perform routine vision exams as well as medical exams depending on the purpose of your visit. They also perform minor procedures such as corneal foreign body removals and punctal plugs. During medical treatments, if a consult with the ophthalmologist is necessary, they are available.