Your ophthalmologist and optometrist working together to provide you the highest quality and convenience.
Co-management is the term used to describe the cooperative care of patients between the primary eye care provider and the ophthalmic surgeon. The components of refractive surgery include the pre-operative examination and measurement of the eyes, the discussion of the surgical procedure, including the alternatives, risk/benefit ratio, and risks and complications; the surgery; and the post-operative care.
At OPTIMA Ophthalmic Medical Associates, we work with hundreds primary care providers throughout Northern California who are experienced and skilled at the pre-operative workup and the post-operative management of refractive surgery patients. Quite frequently, patients prefer to receive both their pre-operative work-up and their post-operative care from their primary eye care providers because of either a long-standing relationship with their provider or because of the geographic convenience of not having to return to the surgeon for every post-operative visit. Another advantage of post-operative management by the primary eye care provider is the fact that a great majority of the post-operative examinations consist of the measurement of the eyes for residual nearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism, or the need for reading glasses. The primary eye care provider who is familiar with the patient’s lifestyle, as well as their individual visual needs best performs this skill.
The Pre-Operative Work-Up
The pre-operative evaluation consists of an evaluation of the eye for the degree of nearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism, and presbyopia, as well as a thorough examination of the inside and outside of the eye to determine if the eye is healthy enough to undergo refractive surgery.
Additionally, corneal curvature maps and thickness measurements are taken. For this examination, it is imperative that the patient not wear soft contact lenses for three days, or gas permeable contact lenses for three weeks prior to this evaluation.
The Post-Operative Care
Your primary eye care provider will perform the post-operative care. Generally, you will be seen on the first post-operative day and then, depending on which surgical procedure was performed, a number of times over the next few weeks and months.
Oftentimes, you will not return to your surgeon for post-operative visits unless requested by your primary eye care provider. If enhancement surgery is required to “fine-tune” the surgical result, then arrangements will be made by your primary eye care provider for this additional “touch-up” procedure.
We feel that the cooperative management of patients with skilled and knowledgeable primary eye care providers, combined with Dr. Mandel’s surgical expertise, provides patients with the highest quality and most convenient refractive surgery experience.