If you are having a medical emergency, we recommend consulting the nearest emergency room or calling 911.
Healthcare Provider Referrals
If you are a healthcare provider referring your patient, please call our office for immediate concerns. You may also submit relevant information via our HIPAA compliant and secure online form – ONLINE REFERRAL.
Urgent Patient Scheduling
If you are a patient, please call our office and speak with one of our optometry coordinators to schedule your visit.
Sudden changes in vision or acute eye problems occur when we least expect it! Wallerich Eye Care offers urgent and same-day appointments that are triaged by one of our optometry coordinators. We make every effort to ensure each patient’s concerns are addressed and we do our best to see each patient as quickly as possible.
Eye Symptoms/Signs That Require Immediate Consultation
- Foreign body removal
- Contact lens related injury/infection
- Eye infections
- New flashes of light and/or floaters
- Chemical exposure
- Eye trauma
- Acute red eye or eye pain (constant throbbing pain)
- Acute light sensitivity/redness/eye discomfort
- Transient loss of vision (intermittent loss of vision)
- Sudden change in vision (worsening)
- Corneal abrasion
Foreign Body Removal
A foreign body or an object (metal, plastic, or any other foreign substance) should be evaluated by your eye doctor as soon as possible. Symptoms often include: irritation, redness, light sensitivity, tearing, and often worsens with time. It is very important to have your eye status evaluated as soon as possible. It is often not recommended to remove a foreign body, especially a sharp object (nail, or many other objects), without consulting an eye care professional. Your eye doctor will place an anesthetic eye drop to relieve the discomfort while you are evaluated in office. Depending on the severity and the injury, your eye doctor will consider the best options for a full recovery.
Contact Lens Related Injury/Infection
Contact lens related injuries or infections can be common especially with poor contact lens habits (overwearing contacts, sleeping in contact lenses, swimming with contact lenses, poor handwashing, and many others). It is advised to remove your contact lenses immediately if experiencing eye related symptoms of an infection. Some of these symptoms of contact lens related infections are as follows: light sensitivity, eye discomfort/pain, redness, swelling, excessive tearing, and many other symptoms. Often, a patient likes to keep the contact in to relieve the pain; however, this often worsens contact lens related infections. It is important to consult your eye doctor to diagnose, treat, and manage your eye related problem as soon as possible.
A chemical exposure/burn is important to have treated immediately. It is advised to consult the bottle of the foreign substance or at least know the type of chemical exposed to. In certain instances, the manufacturer may need to be consulted given toxicities of certain chemicals. It is recommended to use an eye wash station (if at work or within a laboratory) to immediately flush out the eye or use saline (if available). Consult your eye doctor immediately or consult the nearest emergency room or call 911 for emergency services.
Flashes of Light/Floaters
Flashes of light and/or floaters can be an urgent situation depending on the condition ultimately diagnosed by your doctor. For that reason, it is recommended to consult your eye doctor to evaluate, diagnose, and manage your eye condition. In office, you can expect to be dilated to evaluate the inner parts of the eye called the retina and vitreous.
The cornea is the front surface of the eye. If this front surface becomes scratched or a foreign object (your child’s finger, your puppy’s paw, etc.) hits the front surface, you may have a corneal abrasion. Symptoms of a corneal abrasion may be as follows: redness, swelling, light sensitivity, eye pain, foreign body feeling (something in your eye), blurred vision, excessive tearing, and many others. It is important to consult your eye doctor who will diagnose, treat, and manage the condition.
Acute Vision/Sudden Vision Changes or Loss
A sudden change in vision or a temporary loss of vision is always advised to seek immediate eye care. This could be a sign/symptom of a serious underlying systemic condition or could be a change in eye health. Your eye doctor will evaluate your eye health using biomicroscopy, special testing instruments, or other means to determine what structure of the eye is affected. If necessary and appropriate, your eye doctor may consult an ophthalmology colleague (vitreo-retinal surgeon, neuro-ophthalmologist), or another member of the medical community (internal medicine, family medicine, neurology, rheumatology, dermatology, emergency medicine, or many others) depending on your unique diagnosis or signs/symptoms. Often, eye doctors are a first line defense or diagnosticians to aid in the diagnosis and treatment of serious health conditions such as:
- Hypertension (high blood pressure)
- Diabetes (elevated sugar levels)
- Intracranial tumor/intraorbital tumor
- Multiple sclerosis
- Brain swelling
- Acute angle-closure glaucoma
- Inflammatory condition (autoimmune condition or others)
DISCLAIMER: The list above is not an exhaustive list or meant to advise treatment in any way. It is to help guide our patients that eye problems can be only eye problems or related to a systemic health condition. We always recommend working with your healthcare provider or eye doctor to address your concerns.