Eye Care Services
Mercy Eye Center
5085 Monroe St.
Toledo, Ohio 43623
Mercy Eye Center
Frequently Asked Questions
- Sometimes I see spots or things that seem to float. Is that a sign of something serious?
Spots or “floaters” are very common. Over time small opacities develop within the vitreous gel which is located behind the iris and lens but in front of the retina. As light passes through the eye to be focused on the retina, tiny shadows are cast on the retina due to the presence of these vitreal opacities. As the eye moves, the shadows move over the retina as the vitreal gel moves subtly within the eye. They typically aren’t a sign of a serious eye illness or condition, however if you experience a sudden “flash” of light or rush of floaters you may have a tear in your retina or your retina may be actually detaching from the back of the eye. This is a serious condition that must be treated by a medical professional as quickly as possible to avoid permanent vision loss.
- What is “20/20” vision?
When you hear that someone has “20/20” vision it generally means that they have good eyesight and don’t need glasses. However it actually refers to a person’s ability to read a row of 9 millimeter letters on a standard vision chart from 20feet away.
- How often should I get my vision checked?
All adults should have their eyes examined every three to five years; however after age 40 adults should get an eye check-up every two to four years, and seniors (age 65+) should have their vision checked annually or, at the most, every two years. If you have a family history of eye diseases or are at risk for eye illnesses or conditions you should have your vision checked more frequently.
- How often should I get my children’s vision checked?
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that all newborn babies have a vision screening before going home and then infant’s eyesight should be tested at routine well-child visits during their first year which typically take place at the 2, 4 and 6 month marks. Children’s vision should be tested again at age 3 and then yearly for school-age children. Most physicians do a basic check of children’s eyes at every doctor’s office visit and an annual physical should include a vision test. If you are concerned about your child’s vision, check to see if your insurance requires a referral from your pediatrician or family physician to see a participating ophthalmologist.
- What is the different between an optometrist, an ophthalmologist, and an optician?
An optometrist is a medical professional that has a degree in optometry and can provide primary eye care services including eye exams to diagnose and treat eye diseases, and prescribe medication, glasses and contact lenses. Optometrists will often have “O.D.” after their title, which stands for Doctor of Optometry.
An ophthalmologist is a doctor who has graduated from medical school and specializes in the human eye and vision health. Ophthalmologists have specialized eye training, can prescribe glasses and contact lenses, can diagnose and treat a wide range of eye conditions and diseases, and perform both medical and surgical procedures to treat eye conditions. Ophthalmologists will often have “M.D.” after their title which stands for Medical Doctor.
An optician frequently has some post-high school education and on-the-job training. Opticians are trained to fit patients with glasses or contact lenses.
- What is legal blindness?
There are two ways you can be considered legally blind:
- If you have been diagnosed as having 20/200 vision that cannot be improved with glasses or contact lenses, or
- You cannot see beyond a 10 degree radius, or have a visual field of less than 20 degrees in diameter.
- Does LASIK surgery hurt?
You will be given numbing eye drops before the procedure. Although you may feel slight pressure you should not feel any pain. You may experience slight discomfort following the procedure which can usually be reduced by over the counter pain medication and the eye drops we provide.
- Is glaucoma curable?
Currently there is no cure for glaucoma. Vision lost due to glaucoma cannot be restored. That’s why routine eye exams are crucial to diagnose and begin glaucoma treatment before permanent damage occurs.
- Can I have LASIK surgery if I have glaucoma?
Glaucoma patients are not good candidates for LASIK surgery because the procedure increases intraocular pressure. Other vision correction surgical procedures, such as photorefractive keratectomy (PRK) may be prescribed.
- How do I know if I need a specialist for my eye condition?
When you call for an appointment the receptionist will ask about any current eye conditions or, if you don’t have a current diagnosis, about any symptoms you may be experiencing. The office staff will be able to schedule you with the appropriate physician.
- I don’t have health insurance. Can I still receive services at the Mercy Eye Center?
Yes. Uninsured patients are discounted to the Medicare allowable charge. We also work with patients to make manageable payment arrangements. We accept Medicaid and most Medicaid HMO’s. Please inform the receptionist when you call that you do not have insurance.
- What should I consider before selecting an eye surgeon?
As with any medical procedure you should do your homework before selecting a care provider. Specifically, you should ask a prospective surgeon:
It is important that you feel confident and comfortable with your potential surgeon. Once you have selected a surgeon, before scheduling a procedure your surgeon should:
- Are you board certified? Board certification means that the doctor has completed an approved residency program and passed a rigorous written exam in a specialty area.
- How many procedures like mine have you done?
- What is your complication rate?
- Have you been subject to disciplinary sanctions and if so, why? You can learn more about your prospective surgeon by checking with the State Medical Board of Ohio.
- At which hospitals do you have privileges to perform surgeries?
- What is your policy regarding follow-up if a complication occurs?
- Do you accept my insurance?
- If I have additional questions can I reach you by phone or email?
- Is there anyone else in your office I can work with in the event that you are not available?
- take your complete medical history
- walk you through all of the benefits, risks, and alternatives to surgery
- describe the procedure that has been prescribed for you
- inform you about any pre-surgical tests or labs
- give you an estimated recovery time and idea of what the recovery process looks like
- answer any questions you may have