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What is the Difference Between Optometry and Ophthalmology?

Updated: Feb 28

Optometry and ophthalmology are both professions that deal with the eyes

and vision.


Optometry is a healthcare profession that involves the examination,

diagnosis, treatment, and management of eye disorders and diseases.

Ophthalmology, on the other hand, is a medical specialty that

involves the diagnosis and treatment of eye disorders and diseases.


Optometrists are classified as doctors. They are licensed

healthcare professionals who have completed a four-year optometry

program and passed national and state board examinations. They can prescribe

corrective lenses and medications for many eye conditions; however,

they do not perform surgical procedures.

Ophthalmologists are medical doctors who have completed a four-

year ophthalmology residency program after completing medical

school. They can perform both medical and surgical procedures to

correct or improve vision. They can also prescribe medication.

optometrist in Los Angeles

Scope of Practice

Who are optometrists? They are trained to examine the eyes to

detect defects in vision, signs of injury, ocular diseases or abnormality

and problems with general health, such as high blood pressure or


Who are ophthalmologists? They are specialists who handle all the

medical aspects of eye care, such as surgery.

In summary, optometrists and ophthalmologists have similar but different

roles to play, where optometrists are trained to examine, diagnose and

treat eye disorders, while ophthalmologists are medical doctors who are able

to perform medical and surgical procedures.

Our optometrists are fully trained to treat and manage ocular conditions and diseases, and refer to the appropriate ophthalmologist when necessary.

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