What is a retina specialist?
A retina specialist is someone who has gone through medical school and specialized in ophthalmology with an emphasis or secondary specialization on the retina and vitreous areas of the eye. Typically, this specialization takes 10 years to complete and is a combination of schooling, fellowships, and internships.
Schooling to become a retina specialist
The first 4 years of schooling must be completed at a medical school. After completion of the medical program, students will then undergo a 1-year internship with a physician.
Next, a 3-year ophthalmology residency must be established and completed. Finally, students will undergo a 2-year retina-vitreous fellowship.
What does a retina specialist do?
A retina specialist focuses mainly on diagnosing and correcting issues with the retina and vitreous areas of the eye. They use highly specialized equipment and procedures to get to the root of any eye issue so it can easily be treated and corrected. Patients can be young or elder and will be seen throughout clinics, private practices, and hospitals.
Common conditions a retinal specialist will perform
As you can see, a retinal specialist is not a typical eye doctor but instead a specialized eye surgeon who may help your eye doctor correct issues. You wouldn’t typically see a retina specialist unless you were referred to them by your eye doctor.
Common conditions that would inherit a referral include:
- Diabetic retinopathy
- Retinal detachment
- Age-related muscular degeneration
- Macular hole/pucker
Finding a retinal specialist
The easiest way to find a retinal specialist is to ask for a referral from your eye doctor. Your eye doctor will usually have a list of reputable retinal specialists in your area and can help you make an informed decision on who to see.