Frequently Asked Questions

Ophthalmologist

  • An ophthalmologist is a physician (a DO or MD) who specializes in diseases and surgery of the eye. Dr. Simonian and Dr. Rubin are both board-certified ophthalmologists.
  • An ophthalmologist diagnoses and treats all eye diseases, performs eye surgery and prescribes eyeglasses and contact lenses to correct vision problems.
  • Ophthalmologists complete at least 12 years of training, including a 4-year college degree, 4 years of medical school, and 4 years of an ophthalmology-specific residency training program.

Optometrist

  • Optometrists are healthcare professionals who provide primary vision care which includes prescribing glasses to treat vision changes.
  • An optometrist is not a medical doctor.
  • An optometrist receives a doctor of optometry (OD) degree after completing 2 to 4 years of college-level education, followed by 4 years of optometry school.
  • Many ophthalmologists and optometrists work together in the same office as a team.

Optician

  • Opticians are technicians trained to design, verify, and fit eyeglass lenses and frames, contact lenses, and other devices to correct eyesight.
  • They use prescriptions supplied by ophthalmologists or optometrists, but they do not test vision or write prescriptions for visual correction.
  • Opticians are not permitted to diagnose or treat eye diseases.
  • If you haven’t met our optician Michelle, you are in for a treat! Call her to schedule an appointment (248) 547-6656.

When to see an Ophthalmologist

    • Baseline eye exam
    • Decreased or distorted vision
    • Eye pain
    • Eyelid pain or swelling
    • Eye trauma or injury
    • Medical conditions associated with eye problems including Diabetes, Hypertension, Cardiovascular problems, Thyroid disease and other neurologic conditions
    • Family history of eye disease like cataracts, glaucoma and macular degeneration
    • The American Academy of Ophthalmology recommends that everyone have a complete medical eye exam by age 40, and then as often as recommended by your ophthalmologist.
    • When it’s time for new glasses and/or contact lenses

 

When to see an Optician

    • You’ve already seen an ophthalmologist or an optometrist for an eye exam and have obtained a prescription for glasses.

 

Call our office at (248) 547-6656, and we will help you select the appropriate provider.

  • Medical examinations (cataracts, glaucoma, diabetic eye exams, macular degeneration, etc) – usually take 1 to 1 ½ hours and often require dilation.
  • Vision examinations (exam for glasses and contact lenses for otherwise healthy eyes) – usually ½ to 1 hour, plus additional time for eyeglass selection.
  • Follow-up medical visits (eye pressure checks, follow up for corneal abrasion, etc) – usually take ½ to 1 hour and usually do not require dilation.
  • Contact lens evaluations usually take ½ to 1 ½ hour.

A dilated eye exam is a longer appointment during which dilating drops are instilled in each eye to temporarily enlarge the pupils. Enlarging the pupil allows the doctor to perform a complete evaluation of the eye and screen you for eye disease including cataracts, glaucoma, macular degeneration, retinal detachments.  It also allows the doctor to screen you for other health problems with ocular complications including diabetes, hypertension, heart disease and thyroid disease.  Our physicians perform a dilated exam on new patients, and then again on a yearly basis to make sure you and your eyes are healthy.

The dilating eye drops take about 20 minutes to take effect and may last 4-5 hours. While the drops are in effect, you will notice that your pupils are large when you look in the mirror. Your near vision will be blurry making it difficult to read and use your cell phone.  The eyes may also be more sensitive to sunlight during this time. This is normal, and the effects will go away in 4-5 hours. Most people feel comfortable to drive when their eyes are dilated, but if you have any concerns or have not been dilated before, please bring a driver with you to your appointment. We ask that you bring a pair of sunglasses with you to your appointment, but if you forget, we will give you a pair to take home.

Dilated eye exams are usually done once a year, unless otherwise recommended by your ophthalmologist.  Follow up visits for dry eye, glaucoma pressure checks, and follow ups for corneal abrasions usually do not involve dilation. The best way to be sure is to ask your doctor if your eyes will be dilated at the next visit.

The best way to answer this question is to call our office and speak with our staff. We will pick the appointment type that best addresses your needs and tell you what to expect on the day of your appointment.

  • Completed patient information forms
  • Driver’s license
  • Insurance card(s)
  • List of medications (including eye drops)
  • Name, address, and phone number of your pharmacy
  • Your current glasses
  • Any previous medical records, especially test results
  • If you are scheduled for a dilated exam:
    • Sunglasses
    • A driver is optional, but recommended if you have never had a dilated eye exam before

We hope that you will honor your appointment time, however, we realize that unexpected events do occur. If you need to reschedule, we ask that you call us at (248) 547-6656 as soon as possible, so we may offer that appointment time to another patient in need. Multiple last-minute cancelations or no-shows may result in a rebooking fee.

We will notify you the day before to confirm your appointment time. 

If you’ve had a change in your address or insurance information, please contact our office as soon as possible to update your record.

Some insurance companies require authorization and/or referral prior to your visit. Please obtain any necessary referrals prior to your appointment. Invalid or incorrect insurance information may delay your care or result in a bill.

Our office accepts both medical and vision insurance plans, but only one insurance plan may be utilized/billed per visit.

Medical exams for problems associated with your eyes, such as cataracts, glaucoma, macular degeneration, dry eyes, etc., are billed to your medical insurance.

Vision exams are reserved for patients who only need a glasses or contact lens prescription update, where decreased vision is not due to cataracts, glaucoma, etc. Vision exams are billed to your vision insurance.

If you are unsure of your vision insurance benefits, our office is happy to check your eligibility for a vision exam, eyeglass frames, and lenses. If you are interested in contact lenses, there may be a contact lens suitability exam fee in addition to your eye exam.

If you do not have vision insurance, but would still like to update your glasses or contact lenses, we are still able to assist you! Please contact us for details.

Our doctors typically require a medical exam prior to scheduling a vision exam to make sure you do not have cataracts, glaucoma, or another medical problem that glasses will not treat.

Some insurance carriers require the patient to obtain an authorization or referral (permission) to be seen. If your insurance plan requires this, and it was not obtained prior to your visit, you may need to reschedule your appointment.

In order for us to provide you the best possible care (and bill insurance accurately), we need all of your insurance information prior to your appointment.

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