Be sure to visit the appropriate eye care professional when it comes to your eyes. Ophthalmologists, optometrists, and opticians all play essential roles in providing patients with eye care. However, the degrees of training and specialities vary amongst providers.

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Ophthalmologists are medical doctors who specialize in treating eye and vision problems. They have completed four years of college, four years of medical school and at least four more years of study which qualify them to practice medicine and surgery. Ophthalmologists perform eye surgery, diagnose and treat all eye diseases, and recommend and fit eyeglasses and contact lenses to help with vision problems. Many ophthalmologists are also researching the causes and treatments of eye diseases and problems with vision.

Ophthalmologists often choose a specialty such as cataract and refractive surgery, cornea and external eye disease, retina disorders, oculoplastic surgery, pediatrics, or neuro-ophthalmology.


Optometrists are eye doctors who provide primary eye care. This includes testing and correcting vision and diagnosing, treating, and managing eye problems.   

Optometrists are eye doctors who have completed four years of college and four years of optometry school. They may also complete a fellowship to receive additional speciality training.  Optometrists can do eye exams and specialized vision tests, prescribe and give corrective lenses, and provide prescription medication for certain eye disorders as well as foreign body removal.

Many people choose optometrists as their primary eye doctors, but if they need surgery or specialized care, they are sent to an ophthalmologist.


Opticians are trained professionals who design, test, and fit frames and lenses for eyeglasses, contact lenses, and other devices that help people see better. They use the prescriptions that eye doctors give them but don’t do eye exams or write prescriptions for corrective lenses. Opticians are not allowed to identify or treat eye conditions.

Schedule your eye exam with our eye doctors, Dr. Jeffrey Porter and Dr. Will Watson at the following clinics:

Walmart Vision Center Crystal Lake, IL


Walmart Vision Center Harvard, IL


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