Even though the type of treatment you can expect when you visit an eye doctor obviously depends on the kind of problem that you are experiencing, there are some basic similarities that can apply to all kinds of visits. Here is some information that will provide you a general idea of what you will more than likely experience if you need to visit an ophthalmologist.
You will want to bring your glasses or contact lenses with you if you wear them. More than likely, an optician or receptionist will greet you and then you'll be asked to fill out a form and provide information on your general heath history as well as your ocular health history. After filling out the paperwork, your physician will probably check your vision and look for any signs of disease. Depending on how specialized the examination needs to be; your eye doctor may be working with you for up to four or five hours. It is important that your examination is as thorough as possible. Unfortunately, this can often take a great deal of time.
If you are a new patient, your eye doctor will more than likely want to dilate your pupils. This is necessary so that you can be examined as closely as possible. During this process, he or she will put drops in your eyes that will fully dilate the pup within about 45 minutes. As a result, lights will appear brighter and your vision will become blurry. Most ophthalmologists will recommend that their patients bring a pair of sunglasses to their appointment. You should make arrangements to have someone drive you home if you are worried about driving while your pupils are dilated, because they will probably remain in this condition for about 24 hours.
You may be visiting your eye doctor to have a fitting performed for contact lenses. If this is the case, you may go through a very specific type of examination that could require multiple visits. This type of exam can sometimes last for quite a while, so try and clear your schedule completely before you attend. It will be very important that you tell the receptionist you are there for a contact lens fitting and not a regular exam.
For those who are seeing an ophthalmologist for the first time, you can expect a thorough examination of your medical records. Ocular medical history records may include photos, angiograms, and visual fields. The eye doctor will also want you to bring with you records of previous visual exams and any surgeries, if applicable. If you are visiting a neuro-ophthalmologist, you'll need to bring any MRI or CAT scan films you may have, as well as any clinical notes.