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The ophthalmologist

Last reviewed by: Aleksey Portnov , medical expert, on 01.06.2018

In translation from the Greek word for word doctrine of the eyes ("ophthalmos" and "logos"). Accordingly, an ophthalmologist is a doctor specializing in eye problems. In our vocabulary, another term has taken root - the oculist, which comes from the Latin "oculus" (eye). Therefore, both names are equivalent and are used according to personal preferences. After all, it does not matter how you call a competent doctor who returns the gift of seeing the world around him.

The medical industry, which studies the diseases of the organ of vision, develops methods for their prevention and treatment, which deals with the anatomical, physiological features of the eye is called ophthalmology.

Interesting is the fact that in the United States, ophthalmology and optometry are two related but independent medical fields. The ophthalmologist treats with pharmacological means and surgical intervention - an ophthalmologist-surgeon, and the optometrist is engaged in vision correction through spectacle and soft contact lenses with possible treatment of visual system problems without the surgeon's qualification.

Who is an oculist?

The oculist is a doctor specializing in diseases of the eye apparatus, who has deep knowledge in medicine and eye surgery, engaged in the development of preventive drugs, working with trauma of the visual system and their consequences. This specialist is a doctor of medicine or a doctor of osteopathy.

The physician is competent to diagnose and treat specific diseases, and the osteopath focuses on loss of functions and structural changes in the visual system for a particular problem.

Who is an oculist? Firstly, it is a highly qualified specialist in the field of eye treatment, which provides services for: 

  • survey; 
  • therapy and surgery; 
  • diagnosis by various methods; 
  • elimination of complications caused by concomitant problems (for example, diabetes).

The ophthalmologist has the appropriate certification and licensing for medical practice, confirming the level of professionalism. Secondly, the eye doctor is an experienced diagnostician, practicing optometry and ophthalmology. Thirdly, the oculist can be a generalist or have a narrow specialization (for example, deal specifically with the problem of cataract and glaucoma).

When should I go to the oculist?

A timely visit to the ophthalmologist is a guarantee of good vision. For prevention, the visit should be planned once a year, if there are no serious visual disturbances. Emergency resort to the help of a doctor will have to with eye injuries, sharp partial or complete loss of vision.

When should I go to the oculist? The reason for the appeal will be the following complaints: 

  • pain syndrome of the visual apparatus; 
  • red eyes
  • sensation of itching, burning; 
  • dry eye syndrome;
  • lacrimation and the presence of a purulent secret; 
  • foreign body sensation; 
  • light perception, swelling of the eyelids and the area around the eyes; 
  • any violation of the quality of sight - points, flies, dark circles, distortion of visual perception, bifurcation of objects, shroud, flare, etc.

Regularly undergo scheduled examinations from the oculist should people over forty years of age who are at risk for developing cataracts and glaucoma, as well as people with eye diseases of a hereditary nature.

The oculist helps with trichiasis (eyelid twisting with the growth of eyelashes inside), pingvecula (formation on the eyeball in the form of a yellow shade), barley (purulent inflammation on the eyelid), and other diseases.

What tests should I take when I contact an oculist?

The need for conducting laboratory studies is determined by the oculist according to the results of the primary diagnosis. The additional information will help to establish or confirm the diagnosis, to appoint competent treatment, to reveal accompanying pathologies. Often a person comes to the reception with the discomfort of the organs of vision and does not know about the internal, hidden pathogenic processes of the body.

What tests should I take when I contact an oculist? After an initial consultation, you may need: 

  • blood - a general analysis and biochemistry; 
  • Analysis of urine; 
  • Immunogram data (humoral and cellular immunization of the body); 
  • diagnosis of blood for the presence of infection (herpes, adenovirus, toxoplasmosis, chlamydia, mycoplasma, mononucleosis, cytomegalovirus, staphylococcus); 
  • exclusion of viral hepatitis B / C; 
  • determination of sugar in the blood; 
  • bakpos; 
  • determination of the level of hormones.

What diagnostic methods does the oculist use?

Qualitatively conducted diagnostics is an important prerequisite for correct diagnosis and competent treatment. Modern equipment and diagnostic complexes allow to fix the main visual indications in a contactless and comfortable way, which provides an objective evaluation of visual functions and reveals the disease at any stage. The oculist can predict the dynamics of the disease on the basis of the obtained data, as well as suggest ways of solving the detected problem.

What diagnostic methods does the oculist use? In the doctor's office: 

  • ophthalmoscopic examination - examination of the fundus by means of a lens (ophthalmoscopy); 
  • determination of intraocular pressure (tonometry); 
  • a test for color perception
  • removal of refractive characteristics by different lenses for establishing astigmatism, myopia, farsightedness (refractometry); 
  • establishment of visual acuity through tables and special devices (visometry); 
  • measurements of the field of view (periphery) to determine its boundaries and identify defects ( perimetry ); 
  • research of the iris of the eye with the purpose of revealing hereditary and hidden diseases (iridodiagnostics); 
  • determination of the parameters of eye hydrodynamics in glaucoma (tonography); 
  • investigation of the anterior segment by a slit lamp (biomicroscopy); 
  • Grishberg's method for establishing the angle of strabismus.

When it is required to diagnose detachment of the retina, the presence of a foreign body, to study neoplasms, the oculist resorts to ultrasound examination (ultrasound). Evaluation of the position of the retina, the characteristics of the optic nerve and the cortex of the brain gives an electrophysiological method of investigation (EFI).

What does the oculist do?

The ophthalmologist specializes in the clinical field of medicine in the field of etiology, diagnosis, preventive methods, as well as methods of treating various pathologies of the organs of vision. The oculist examines the internal and external structure of the eyes in order to detect pathological conditions - glaucoma, retinal detachment, cataracts.

What does the oculist do? Advising an ophthalmologist involves: 

  • collection of anamnesis (complaints of the patient himself, getting information about the diseases, peculiarities of the habitual way of life and working conditions, as well as getting acquainted with the already available medical reports); 
  • biomicroscopic examination of the eyes and fundus, assessment of visual acuity using a set of test glasses, recording of the data of a tonometer (intraocular pressure); 
  • referral to additional examinations; 
  • the construction of a therapeutic scheme, recommendations on visual gymnastics and the regime of the day; 
  • discharge of spectacle / soft contact lenses (including care for MKL); 
  • direction for surgical intervention according to indications.

In addition to the listed ophthalmologists determine the characteristics of coordination and focus, the perception of the full color spectrum and completeness of vision.

The oculist is an ambulance in case of eye injuries, for example, in the presence of a foreign body.

What diseases are treated by an oculist?

The oculist is treated with any visual apparatus problem: from pain syndrome due to fatigue to astigmatism and cataracts. The oculist establishes an accurate diagnosis, the cause of the disease and prescribes therapy or correction.

What diseases are treated by an oculist? In the conduct of this specialist the most common diseases - conjunctivitis, retinitis, iridocyclitis, blepharitis and various allergic manifestations. In addition to astigmatism, hyperopia, myopia, the oculist deals with such rare pathologies as: 

  • opacification (destructive changes) of the vitreous body; 
  • violation of transparency of light-conducting structures; 
  • corneal opacity (throat); 
  • hereditary and congenital problems (non-opening of lacrimal canals in infants); 
  • omission of the upper eyelid (ptosis); 
  • age-related trophic changes (pigmentary degeneration and atherosclerotic degeneration of the retina), etc.

The goal of an ophthalmologist is to establish the root cause of visual disturbances. For example, neurological diseases can provoke such eye dysfunctions as atrophy of the optic nerve. Diabetic retinopathy or relapse of hemophthalmia are the consequences of diabetes mellitus. Vision disorders often cause: 

  • atherosclerosis; 
  • impaired kidney function; 
  • blood diseases; 
  • pathological course of pregnancy; 
  • problems with the brain / spinal cord; 
  • osteoarticular changes; 
  • difficult to pass birth; 
  • injury.

Advice from an ophthalmologist

The oculist is a specialist whose main task is to prevent eye diseases and develop preventive methods for increasing vision.

Advice from an ophthalmologist: 

  • for the purpose of preserving or improving the eyesight, one should give the eyes half an hour of daily rest followed by a simple exercise: strongly close the eyelids for a couple of seconds, then relax and open your eyes wide. Do this gymnastics for five minutes with a break in half a minute. Relaxation of the eyes must coincide with the resting state of the whole organism; 
  • using a book with a small font, take it about 30cm from the eyes, at a slow pace, move the text to yourself, trying to read it. After a few minutes, take a look away. After five approaches, relax; 
  • move more and stay out in the fresh air; 
  • watch for food - eat natural food with minimal processing time. Include in your diet fruits, vegetables, honey, nuts, eggs, dairy products, seeds. Take care of sufficient intake of vitamin A and B; 
  • Do not forget about the distance in front of the TV screen and the computer monitor; 
  • Do not read in traffic and semi-darkness (transport); 
  • get rid of addictions in the form of smoking and alcohol abuse; 
  • when monotonous work at the computer during the day, do 20-second pauses every 20 minutes; 
  • follow the posture, as problems in the cervical spine lead to a decrease in visual acuity; 
  • regularly check your eyesight.

Based on the results of the examination and diagnosis, the oculist will give individual recommendations on visual load, the use of corrective exercises or special hardware treatment.

It is important to know!

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