Frequently Asked Questions

Blurry Vision

There are thousands of reasons for blurry vision, but for any cause, a thorough eye exam is helpful in determining the best course of treatment. A refraction can be performed to determine if the cause of blurry vision is an error in the refractive power of the eye. This can be solved in multiple ways, including glasses, contact lenses, or surgery. Thousands of diseases can also cause blurry vision and can sometimes only be found with an eye exam. If you are having blurry vision, you are urged to see your eye doctor.

Eye Pain

Eye pain can be caused from numerous types of pathology. These include injury, infection, and inflammation. It is hard to know which one of these is the underlying cause in certain situations without having your eyes examined. We recommend an examination with your eye doctor if you are having any significant type of eye pain.

Eye Infections

Eye infections are most commonly caused by bacteria and viruses. However, there are also serious infections caused by more rare fungi and parasites. The most common risk factor for eye infections is contact lens wear. If you think you may have an eye infection, immediately stop your contact lens wear and have an examination by your eye doctor. Other risk factors for eye infections include dry eyes, use of steroids, systemic infections, and swimming.

Eye Injuries

Any physical injury to the eye warrants a good dilated eye exam. Your eye doctor will know after performing your exam whether you need further testing, medication, or even surgery. If you have any pain or loss of vision after an eye injury, see your eye doctor immediately for an exam.

Questions About Surgery

Q: When do I start my eye drops?
A: You will discuss this with Dr. Weeks at your pre op exam. You will start your drops two days before the day of your surgery in the eye you are having surgery on. Use one drop of each bottle only in the eye you are having surgery on. Wait several minutes between each drop that you are using. That way, each drop has time be be absorbed onto the eye before the next drop.

Q: What time do I get to the hospital for surgery?
A: You will get to the hospital approximately 1-2 hours before your surgery. The hospital will call you the day before to tell you what time this will be.

Q: What can I eat or drink the day of surgery?
A: You are not to eat or drink anything before your surgery. You will discuss this with Dr. Weeks at your pre op exam, but you are to take your normal medications that you would typically take in the morning with several sips of water. Dr. Weeks may discuss holding specific medications such as blood thinners, but do not hold these unless you have discussed it with your doctor.

Q: Do I need a driver?
A: The hospital requires that you have a driver to take you home from the surgery. Also, we always recommend that you have a driver for your one day postop visit. After this, you should begin driving again after you’ve discussed it with Dr. Weeks.

Q: Is there anything I shouldn’t do following the surgery period?
A: The day of the surgery, you’re asked to do only light activity with no bending or straining. You can walk around carefully with your eye shield over your surgical eye. You are to sleep in the shield at night for the first week after surgery. You should never rub the eye or get water in the eye during this period.

Q: How long should I use my eye drops?
A: You will generally be on your eye drops for a total of several weeks. You will be instructed at each of your follow-up visits how many times a day to use your eye drops. Do not stop your drops until your eye doctor instructs you to do so. Please talk with your eye doctor if you have any questions about which eye drops to continue or stop.

Diabetic Eye Problems

Type 1 and type 2 diabetics are at a significantly increased risk of eye disease. The longer the duration of diabetes, the higher the risk. Poor controlled blood sugar is also a contributor to eventual eye problems. It is recommended to have your eyes checked at least once every year if you are a diabetic. However, if further eye disease such as diabetic retinopathy is discovered, your doctor may recommend that you follow up more frequently. In some cases, laser surgery or incisional surgery is needed in order to stabilize and protect the eye.

Glaucoma

Glaucoma is a very common disease that affects around 5% of the adult population, but it is actually much higher than this in certain ages and ethnic groups. Often, there are very few symptoms until the disease is very advanced with very little vision remaining. The best way to detect glaucoma is on a complete eye exam. If you have a family history of glaucoma, you are at an increased risk. Please ask your eye doctor how often you need to be checked for glaucoma based on your risk factors.

Floaters and Flashes

Any new onset of spots or floaters in the vision, or lights flashing persistently in the vision, warrants a good dilated eye exam. Often, this is due to a degenerative process of the vitreous gel filling the back of the eye. Nonetheless, it still can cause damage in a small fraction of people. The only way to insure against a bigger problem is to have a full dilated eye exam. If you notice these symptoms beginning, see your eye doctor as soon as possible.

Macular Degeneration

Macular degeneration is broad term that most people refer to when discussing age related disease of the center of the retina, which affects the center of the vision. Macular degeneration is very common in elderly adults, particularly if there is a family history. The biggest risk factor for macular degeneration is smoking. Any elderly patient with a family history of macular degeneration or signs of macular degeneration should be advised to stop smoking. There are other lifestyle modifications and vitamins that may help. The best way to know if you have macular degeneration is a dilated eye exam. Treatments for macular degeneration incude medication injections to prevent bleeding or fluid leaking into the retina. You can discuss this further with your eye doctor if findings of macular degeneration are present.

Financing and Insurance

INSURANCE

Auburn Cataract and Eye Clinic, LLC accepts a wide range of insurance plans including Blue Cross Blue Shield, Medicare, United HealthCare, Tri Care, Humana, Cigna, Viva, Multiplan, Medicaid, and several other insurance plans. Medically necessary eye exams and surgical procedures are covered by most private insurance companies, such as Blue Cross Blue Shield, and by federal insurers like Medicare, Medicaid and Tricare.

Copayments will be collected before you see the doctor. Also due are any deductibles and non-covered charges as determined by your insurer. Auburn Cataract and Eye Clinic accepts Cash, Check, Visa, Mastercard, Discover and American Express.

Refractions are the tests used to determine the best corrective lenses when eyeglasses are needed for sharp and clear vision. Our charge for a refraction is $25.00 and is due with your specialist office visit copayment prior to seeing the doctor. Most insurance companies choose not to cover the cost of the refraction, which they consider to be only for vision correction and not medically necessary. Your insurance company decides if it will cover a refraction, not Auburn Cataract and Eye Clinic.

Referrals and Prior Authorizations – Your insurance company may require a referral from your primary physician because Dr. Weeks is a specialist. They may also require prior authorization for laser and surgical procedures required for your treatment.

FINANCING

We also offer a source of credit known as Carecredit, which allows you to finance your surgery if you aren’t able to pay your balance prior to surgery. We will be glad to discuss these options further with you, if you wish to schedule your surgery.

Patient Responsibility

The patient is responsible for making sure all requirements of your insurer are met so that your treatment will be covered in full. Contact your insurance company directly prior to your visit with Dr. Weeks. Any cost not covered by your insurance company will be billed to you, the patient.

Cataracts

Cataracts are a clouding of the eye’s natural lens with aging, but can also be caused from other medical conditions. The most common symptom from cataracts is blurry vision. However, this can manifest in multiple ways that include difficulty with reading, driving, glare symptoms, or other eye difficulties. Confirmation that you have cataracts can be obtained by a thorough exam with your eye doctor.

Q: When do I start my eye drops?
A: You will discuss this with Dr. Weeks at your pre op exam. You will start your drops two days before the day of your surgery in the eye you are having surgery on. Use one drop of each bottle only in the eye you are having surgery on. Wait several minutes between each drop that you are using. That way, each drop has time be be absorbed on to the eye before the next drop.

Q: What time do I get to the hospital for surgery?
A: You will get to the hospital approximately 1-2 hours before your surgery. The hospital will call you the day before to tell you what time this will be.

Q: What can I eat or drink the day of surgery?
A: You are not to eat or drink anything before your surgery. You will discuss this with Dr. Weeks at your pre op exam, but you are to take your normal medications that you would typically take in the morning with several sips of water. Dr. Weeks may discuss holding specific medications such as blood thinners, but do not hold these unless you have discussed it with your doctor.

Q: Do I need a driver?
A: The hospital requires that you have a driver to take you home from the surgery. Also, we always recommend that you have a driver for your one day postop visit. After this, you should begin driving again after you’ve discussed it with Dr. Weeks.

Q: Is there anything I shouldn’t do following the surgery period?
A: The day of the surgery, you’re asked to do only light activity with no bending or straining. You can walk around carefully with your eye shield over your surgical eye. You are to sleep in the shield at night for the first week after surgery. You should never rub the eye or get water in the eye during this period.

Q: How long should I use my eye drops?
A: You will generally be on your eye drops for a total of several weeks. You will be instructed at each of your follow-up visits how many times a day to use your eye drops. Do not stop your drops until your eye doctor instructs you to do so. Please talk with your eye doctor if you have any questions about which eye drops to continue or stop.

Refractions

Refraction – A refraction is the part of the eye exam that determines the prescription needed for eyeglasses or contact lenses to give you the clearest and sharpest vision. Our charge for a refraction is $25.00 and is due with your specialist office visit copayment prior to seeing the doctor. Most medical insurance plans do not cover the cost of a refraction because they do not consider the test to be medically necessary. Your insurance company decides if it will cover a refraction, not Auburn Cataract and Eye Clinic.