A. Optometry is the primary health profession dedicated to caring for the most treasured of our human senses – vision. Through academic and clinical training, optometrists acquire the knowledge and skills needed to diagnose, treat and prevent problems of the visual system. Providing health education, managing curative or preventive regimens and supplying vision care to special groups of patients are all parts of an optometrist’s work.

Optometrists practice individually, in group practices with other optometrists and alongside medical practitioners in interdisciplinary health clinics in large and small communities across the United States. Optometrists also work in teaching and research settings, health administration, and public health.

Optometrists are primary care providers. Therefore, practitioners must recognize ocular and visual signs of disease understand the wide range of health problems affecting a patient and refer patients to appropriate specialist.

Optometrist treats ocular disease with medication today in all 50 states. Often, optometrists have responsibilities beyond the care of individual patients. Optometrists are involved, for example, in workplace design and with creation of highway lighting and marking systems. Public health activities may include visual screening programs for communities, industries and schools.

The profession provides an intellectually stimulating career with a humanitarian role in today’s society. B. Orthoptics is a profession allied to medicine whose primary remit is the diagnosis and non- medical management of strabismus (squint), amblyopia (lazy eye) and eye movement disorders.

The word orthoptics comes from the Greek words ὀρθός orthos, “straight” and ὀπτικός optikοs, “relating to sight” and much of the practice of orthoptists concerns refraction and muscular eye control. Orthoptists are trained professionals who specialize in orthoptic treatment, but generally without any medical qualifications. With specific training, in some countries orthoptists may be involved in monitoring of some forms of eye disease, such as glaucoma, cataract creening and diabetic retinopathy.

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