First Office Visit
Preparing for Your First Office Visit and What to Expect
When you come to Quigley Eye Specialists for your first office visit, expect to be greated by a friendly staff member who will check you in and then offer you a comfortable seat in the reception area where there are also refreshments. Shortly thereafter one of our pleasant and knowlegeable ophthalmic technicians will come and greet you and take you to one of our examination rooms where she will start your eye exam.
Please bring the following when you come to our office for your eye exam:
- List of current medications
- Your most current insurance cards
Your Quigley Eye Specialists ophthalmic technician will ask about any eye or vision problems you are currently having and about your overall health. In addition, your patient history will include when your eye or vision symptoms began, medications you are taking, and any work-related or environmental conditions that may be affecting your vision. Your ophthalmic technician will also ask about any previous eye or health conditions you and your family members have experienced.
Visual acuity measurements evaluate how clearly each eye is seeing. Reading charts are often used to measure visual acuity. As part of the testing, you will read letters on charts at a distance and near.The results of visual acuity testing are written as a fraction, such as 20/40. The top number in the fraction is the standard distance at which testing is done (20 feet). The bottom number is the smallest letter size you were able to read. A person with 20/40 visual acuity would have to get within 20 feet to see a letter that should be seen clearly at 40 feet. Normal distance visual acuity is 20/20.
Your Quigley Eye Specialists ophthalmic technician may first want to look at specific aspects of your visual function and eye health. Preliminary tests can include evaluations of depth perception, color vision, eye muscle movements, peripheral or side vision, and the way your pupils respond to light.
Refraction determines the lens power you need to compensate for any refractive error (nearsightedness, farsightedness or astigmatism). Using an instrument called a phoropter, your Quigley Eye Specialists ophthalmic technician places a series of lenses in front of your eyes. He or she then measures how these lenses focus light using a handheld lighted instrument called a retinoscope. The lens power is then refined based your input on the lenses that give you the clearest vision.
This testing is performed without eye drops to determine how the eyes respond under normal seeing conditions.
Eye Health Evaluation - The Dilated Examination
Your Quigley Eye Specialists Doctor will want to get a complete picture of the health of your eyes. Accordingly, during your examination, drops may be placed in your eyes to dilate your pupils to check for eye diseases such as cataracts, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, and macular degeneration. The purpose of dilation is to get a clear view of the optic nerve and retina in the back of your eye for early detection and treatment of eye diseases that can rob you of your sight. If your pupils are dilated, your vision may be blurred for a short time. You will be sensitive to bright light for a few hours, however we will gladly give you a pair of dark sunglasses to take with you for your comfort and convenience. If you are uncomfortable driving during that dilated period, we do advise you to bring someone along who can drive you home.
During this medical part of the complete exam with your Quigley Eye Specialists doctor, he or she will examine the front part of your eye (your cornea, pupil, iris and intraocular lens) with a special microscope called a slit lamp. The procedure is painless, all you have to do while comfortably seated in the exam chair is to put your chin on a chin rest. Then, your doctor may further examine the back of your eye - the retina - with some special lenses and bright lights that allow him to see well into the very back part of your eye.
Then, depending upon your doctor's findings, some additional tests may be conducted. For example, if you have been diagnosed with cataracts and you are contemplating cataract surgery, you may have tests called corneal topography and biometry of the eye. Corneal topography is a test that maps the unique shape of your cornea which helps your surgeon plan for the type of intraocular lens implant he will use for your cataract surgery and the best plan for correcting your astigmatism, should your eye not be perfectly round. Biometry measures the length of your eye and your corneal surface curvature which helps your surgeon determine the correct power of the intraocular lens that will be implanted in your eye during your cataract surgery.
Finally, Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) is a test that takes pictures of the cell layers of your retina and is used in the diagnosis of glaucoma, diabetic eye disease and other problems of the retina.
At the end of your complete eye exam with our friendly and compassionate staff of doctors and ophthalmic technicians at Quigley Eye Specialists, you will be given a current prescription for eyeglasses. We have a full service optical shop with trained, professional opticians ready to help you select the perfect pair of frames and lenses that are competitively priced to fit any budget.
How long will I be dilated?
Dilation usually lasts a few hours, but each patient is different. The lighter your eyes, the longer you will remain dilated.
How long does a complete eye exam take?
Your complete eye exam will take approximately one hour.
Do I need a driver?
Most people are able to drive after their eye examination, however, you should bring a driver if you think you may be uncomfortable driving home.
How soon can I have surgery if I have cataracts?
Most surgeries can be scheduled within 7 – 10 days, however we always strive to accommodate the special needs of our guests.
Will Medicare pay for my eye exam?
Medicare will pay 80% of the approved amount, and if you have a secondary insurance, they will usually pay the balance.
Do I need a referral from my Primary Care Physician?
If you are enrolled with an HMO, you will most likely need a referral.
How soon can I get an appointment for an eye exam?
We can normally schedule new patients within one week.
What do I need to bring to my first appointment?
Your current eyeglasses, list of current medications, and any eye-drops you are using.
If I do need surgery, where would the surgery be performed?
All of our Florida eye surgeries are performed at our state-of-the-art surgery center, St. Johns Surgery Center, in Fort Myers.
How long does it take to get glasses made?
Our team of Florida opticians are dedicated to getting your specialty frames and lenses to you within 3 to 5 days.