Ophthalmologists are medical doctors who have undergone advanced specialty training in eye diseases and eye surgery. At Florida Eye Center our specialists begin each patient encounter by assessing not only your ocular history but your medical history as well. Instruments utilized by the ophthalmologist during a comprehensive examination allow him to visualize the entire visual system, including the cornea, lens, and retina, where diabetic and hypertensive changes can be seen in patients with these medical conditions. Too many adults have undetected retinal problems, glaucoma, or other eye disorders. All can lead to serious loss of vision. However, with the advancement of technology, far more can be done to treat most eye problems.
Pediatric Eye Examinations
Pediatricians are doing a great job in early vision screening and early detection of strabismus (“crossed eyes”). However, few vision screening tests are able to detect subtle childhood deficiencies in visual acuity, depth perception, and motility, nor do screenings provide complete examination of the child’s retina.
We believe that all children should be given a complete preschool eye examination by an ophthalmologist around the time of their third birthday. By this age most children are able to fully cooperate with the examination if given appropriate encouragement. Note that even newborn infants can be successfully examined when an eye problem is suspected. Successful treatment of childhood eye problems indeed works best with timely diagnosis and initiation of management.
Reducing Anxiety in Children’s Eye Exams
Pediatric eye exams can be fun, and in fact it must be fun or else many children would be too frightened to cooperate. That’s why we create a kid-friendly environment right from the start by providing a playroom for our young patients to explore.
During the examination we play interactive games with the use of toys, flashcards, and even a musical bear to achieve a complete series of tests presented to the child in game form. Even the most difficult part of a pediatric eye exam, looking closely at the retina, is completed without the use of intimidating devices and equipment.
Also important in reducing anxiety are special members of our medical support staff. Theses ophthalmic assistants are chosen for their ability to communicate with children on a child-like level. Their role is vital in helping to ensure a successful examination.
Emergency Care for Children
Studies have shown that children under the age of ten account for approximately 50% of all vision threatening injuries. Nothing is more frightening to parent than an injured child, especially when the child’s eyes are endangered. At Florida Eye Center there is always a physician on call for emergencies, including evenings and weekends.