Routine Eye Exams


An eye exam is a painless procedure in which your eyes are checked to look for common vision problems and eye diseases, many of which have no early warning signs. Regular exams can help you to not only protect your vision, but also to ensure that you are seeing at your best.

How To Prepare

When you call to make an appointment, provide the identification information requested and briefly describe any problems you're having.

Please check out our Patient Forms page, where you can download and print our New Patient PDF Document which includes the forms that are pertinent to all new patients. We request that you complete these forms prior to your office visit. If you choose not to, please be prepared to arrive about 15-20 minutes prior to your scheduled appointment to complete the forms. Also be sure to bring your current insurance card(s) if you want us to file claims on your behalf.

You should be prepared to discuss your health history and any medications you are taking. Also, make a list of questions to bring with you to your appointment. Finally, bring your glasses or contact lenses with you.

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Your Appointment

Upon your arrival, an office staff member will greet you and provide you with any further paperwork or forms that need to be completed.

Prior to your examination, a staff member will visit with you about your medical and vision history, medications or eyewear prescriptions, insurance information and any other questions you might have.

Your Eye Exam

When you see Dr. Robinson, he will inquire about any eye or vision problems you may be experiencing. You will be asked to describe them, how long you have had them, and any factors that have made them better or worse. Your history (if any) of glasses or contact lenses will be reviewed. Questions concerning your overall health will be posed, including any medications you take and your family's medical history.

Your eye exam will involve a series of tests designed to evaluate your vision and the health of your eyes. The doctor will use a variety of instruments, aim bright lights directly at your eyes and request that you look through a variety of lenses. Each test he performs during your eye exam evaluates a different aspect of your vision.

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You will likely have all or most of the following eye tests during your eye exam. You may also have additional, more specialized eye tests if the eye doctor deems it necessary.

External examination: Dr. Robinson will inspect the exterior of your eye, including surrounding tissues, eyelids, the separation between your eyelids, and the condition of the white of your eyes.

eye chart at eye doctor officeVisual acuity: You read letters from a projected eye chart to measure your distance visual acuity. You cover each eye in turn and, using the other eye, read aloud, going down the chart, until you can't read the letters anymore. A small hand held acuity chart may be used to measure your near vision.

Color blindness test: A screening test will be administered by Dr. Robinson to determine your color vision. Most cases of color vision deficiency are hereditary, mild, and generally have little effect on how you live.

Eye muscle movement: Dr. Robinson will ask you to visually track a target (such as a penlight) in different directions and observe your eye movements. This tests your eye muscle balance and control.

Pupil function: Your pupils will be examined by Dr. Robinson with a penlight at close distance to see that they respond (constrict) properly to light.

Visual field test: Dr. Robinson will determine what you can see at the edges of your visual field without moving your eyes. Each eye is tested separately to assess the extent of your peripheral vision.

Cover test: This is a check for how well your eyes work together. As you stare at a small target some distance away, Dr. Robinson will ask you to cover each of your eyes alternately to observe how much your eyes move, watching for an eye that turns away from the target (strabismus). The test may be repeated up close.

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phoroptor - retinoscopy and refraction assessmentRetinoscopy: Dr. Robinson will dim the room lights and shine a light at your eyes and flip lenses of a phoroptor (an instrument containing wheels of different lenses) as you look through it while staring at a large target, such as a big "E". By checking the way light reflects from your eyes, the doctor gets an approximate idea of the lens prescription you need now.

Refraction assessment: (Refraction assessment is administered upon patient request.) For your exact lens prescription, Dr. Robinson will have you look through a phoroptor, (an instrument containing wheels of different lenses), and judge which combination gives you the sharpest vision. If you don't need corrective lenses, you won't have this test.

slit-lamp examinationSlit-lamp examination: A slit lamp magnifies and lights up the front of your eye. Often, the light beam is narrowed into a vertical "slit" during the examination. Dr. Robinson uses it to detect several eye diseases and disorders by examining your cornea, iris, lens, and anterior chamber. When used with an ophthalmoscope, pupil dilation, and special lenses, the slit-lamp also provides detailed views of the back of your eye.

Glaucoma testing: This tests whether the fluid pressure inside your eyes is within a normal range. It is performed using an instrument called an application tonometer, and is usually mounted to a slit-lamp. With drops numbing your eyes, you stare directly ahead. Dr. Robinson will barely touch the front surface of each eye to measure the pressure. If you have glaucoma or are at the risk of having glaucoma, Dr. Robinson may perform addiional peripheral visual field testing andoptic nerve evaluation testing and screening.

Pupil dilation: Drops are placed in your eyes to dilate, or widen, the pupils. With your pupils fully enlarged, Dr. Robinson will examine the inside of your eyes with different instruments and lights. The pupil-enlarging drops for this part of your eye exam start to work after about 20-30 minutes, making your eyes more sensitive to light and blurring your vision. These effects may last for several hours. If you don't have sunglasses with you, our staff will provide you with disposable sunglasses for your trip home.

Retinal examination (ophthalmoscopy): Using an ophthalmoscope and pupil dilation, Dr. Robinson will examine the back of your eyes: retina, retinal blood vessels, vitreous, and optic nerve head.

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Eyewear Prescriptions

eyeglassesIf your examination indicates that corrective lenses are appropriate, Dr. Robinson will provide you with an eyewear prescription at the conclusion of the exam.

Your eyewear prescription is an order written by the doctor that specifies the value of all parameters he has deemed necessary to construct and/or dispense corrective lenses appropriate for you.

contact lensesEyeglasses and contact lens prescriptions are usually different, partly because of the distance between the glasses and your eyes.

Contact lens prescriptions expire yearly. This is to ensure that your eyes are still healthy enough to support contact lens wear and that the current lenses are not causing any adverse effects.

Eye Medications

The most common therapeutic uses for eye medications include glaucoma, eye infections, allergy and inflammation (redness) of the eye.

Most eye medicines need a prescription. Dr. Robinson will provide you with a prescription to prevent or treat your eye disease at the conclusion of the exam.

Artificial tears (to lubricate the eye) and ocular decongestants (to decrease redness) are available as over-the-counter eye drops. Eye drops and ointments (salves) are the most common ways to medicate the eye. The doctor will direct you as to the use of over-the-counter products.

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