During a comprehensive eye examination, your eye doctor will screen for vision related problems and medical eye conditions that could impact your vision or eye health.

What to Bring

  • Glasses

  • Sunglasses (if prescription)

  • Original contact lens boxes (if available)

  • Any eye drops you are using

  • A list of all prescription medications you take

  • Name and address of Primary Care Provider

What should you expect during a comprehensive eye examination?

Patient History
During and throughout your eye exam, the optometry technician and your optometrist will ask about your prior eye history, medical history, current & past medications, family medical/eye history, and many other important aspects. The doctor will ask about current symptoms or signs that impact your vision or eye health.


These tests or high-tech machines measure the curvature of the cornea (front surface of the eye) by focusing a circle of light on the cornea and measuring its reflection. This helps your optometrist with an initial start of your ophthalmic prescription, the best contact lens for your unique eye (based upon specific measurements), and other critical aspects to rule out underlying eye diseases.

The optometry technician and your optometrist will check your eye pressures, which is one factor potentially leading to a disease called glaucoma. There are a number of ways to check your eye pressures, but we have eliminated the “air puff” test and now use iCare tonometers. It creates an improved experience without the puff of air.

Preliminary Tests
Your optometrist may look at several unique aspects of your vision or eye health that may include depth perception, color vision, eye muscle movements, peripheral (side vision), pupil responses, and several other aspects pending your initial concerns.

Eye Movements
To allow for a clear, single image, the eyes must work in concert or together to be able to change focus, move and work in unison. Your binocular vision specialist, optometrist, may test accommodation (ability to focus), ocular motility (eye movement), and/or binocular vision (the ability of your eyes to work well together). This is particularly for a number of patientss that have a history of traumatic/acquired brain injuries (concussions, brain tumors, etc.) and the pediatric patient population.

Your optometrist then uses an instrument called a phoropter or an autophoropter (electronic device) to determine your ‘refractive power’ to aide in the correction of nearsightedness, farsightedness, or astigmatism.

Visual Acuity
Visual acuity is the way your optometrist assesses how well you can see at distance and near. 20/20 acuity is the goal for every visit; however, there may be factors impacting vision that may include: cataracts, glaucoma, macular degeneration, strabismus, amblyopia, or a number of other eye conditions.

Eye Health Evaluation
Your optometrist uses a microscope, high quality magnified lenses, & other digital technology as tools to assess the health of the eye and surrounding structures of the eye. Dilating your eyes in office is always recommended for patients with a history of systemic diseases (diabetes, hypertension, thyroid disease, and many others) & to ensure excellent eye health while ruling out retinal eye diseases (retinal detachments, retinal holes, retinopathy), optic nerve disorders (glaucoma, optic neuropathy, etc.) or macula conditions (macular degeneration, macular edema, etc.).

How often should I get a comprehensive eye examination?

Adult: An eye examination is recommended at least every two years from age 18-64 unless followed for a particular systemic or eye condition.

Child: An eye examination is recommended at least once between 6-12 months of age. Then, at least once between ages 3 years and 5 years. It then should be completed annually from age 6 to age 17.

Source: American Optometric Association