Patients

Information for Patients

Public FAQ

Your best option is to bring your questions to your doctor or nurse practitioner. You may also want to explore the websites of some of the teaching hospitals associated with the University of Toronto's Department of Ophthalmology & Vision Sciences. Links to them are listed under the Home tab at the top left of this website.

What is Ophthalmology?
Ophthalmology is the branch of medicine that deals with the anatomy, physiology and diseases of the eye. For a more detailed definition, see the Canadian Ophthalmological Society (COS) website.

Can you recommend an Ophthalmologist in my area?
The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario has a list of specialists. The University of Toronto Department of Ophthalmology & Vision Sciences does not make recommendations.

How do I get an appointment with an Ophthalmologist?
You need to be examined and referred by a doctor, nurse practitioner or an optometrist. They are the ones who can make an appointment for you to see an ophthalmologist.

How does vision work?
The Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto offers a basic description.

What are some common eye diseases and treatments?
The Canadian Ophthalmological Society provides a summary of the main disorders and treatments.

What is the difference between doctors, residents, and fellows?
Practicing ophthalmologists have medical degrees as well as additional training in ophthalmology.

Residents are licensed medical doctors now training to be ophthalmologists.

Fellows are fully licensed ophthalmologists undergoing additional specialized training on specific diseases and treatments, including surgery. The term "fellow" is used for both male and female doctors.

What does FRCSC mean after an ophthalmologist's name?
FRCSC (Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons of Canada) means the doctor has also completed a fellowship in specialized surgical training and passed exams administered by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons. The Royal College is the national professional association that sets standards and evaluates medical education for specialists in Canada.