Eye Care Specialists

The American Academy of Ophthalmology recommends that adults get a complete eye examination at age 40, and yearly exams are recommended for adults age 65 and older. Even if you are under 40, get an eye exam if you have an eye disease or risk factors such as diabetes, high blood pressure, or a family history of eye disease.

To find a specialist near you, do an internet search for the professional title and your zip code or city name. For example, search for optometrist 55407 or ophthalmologist Roseville.

If you or a loved one has vision issues, you may meet several specialists for examination, diagnosis, and treatment. Here is a quick and easy guide to eye care professionals.

Optician

An optician can sell you corrective lenses such as eyeglasses. Opticians are not doctors. They use prescriptions created by an optometrist or ophthalmologist to make sure that you are correctly fitted with eyeglasses.

Optometrist

An optometrist can perform eye exams, prescribe corrective lenses (eyeglasses or contact lenses), and prescribe some medications to treat eye issues. Optometrists are doctors who have earned a Doctor of Optometry (O.D.). If your optometrist detects signs of an eye condition or disease, you may be referred to an ophthalmologist for further examination and treatment.

Ophthalmologist

An ophthalmologist can perform eye exams, prescribe corrective lenses, diagnose and treat eye diseases, prescribe medications, and perform eye surgery. Ophthalmologists are doctors who have earned a medical doctorate (M.D.). If you are diagnosed with an eye condition or disease, you may be referred to an ophthalmologist with a specialty in your diagnosis; for example, a retina specialist.

Retina specialist

A retina specialist can perform eye surgery and provide treatment for macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, retinal detachment, and other conditions or diseases affecting the retina or vitreous. Retina specialists, also known as vitreoretinal specialists, are medical doctors (M.D.) who are specialized in ophthalmology with a sub-specialty in diseases and surgery of the retina and the vitreous body. If you have a retinal issue, your optometrist or ophthalmologist may refer you to a retina specialist.