Close up image of a phoropter, equipment used to test vision.

Patient Information

This section includes information about your exam, new patient forms, and policies.

Your questions answered

We’ve answered the most commonly asked questions below. Feel free to call or email us if you don’t find the information you need.

A comprehensive eye exam is a thorough examination of your eye health and vision through a series of tests and procedures.

  • Vision assessments/refraction: Optometrists determine the clarity or blur that patients have and use tailored techniques to find a prescription for the patients’ best possible vision.
  • Binocular vision: Optometrists determine the patient’s ability to properly focus and coordinate the eyes, and assess depth perception.
  • Eye disease: Optometrists diagnose and treat some eye diseases with pharmaceutical agents. They also identify systemic diseases with ocular manifestations such as diabetes, high blood pressure, thyroid conditions, cancer, and HIV.
  • Pre/post-op care: Optometrists provide both pre-operative and post-operative care for cataract surgery, refractive surgery (LASIK), and retinal surgery.
  • Insurance information
  • Current glasses and prescription
  • Current contact lenses and prescription
  • Medical history
  • List of questions

An initial comprehensive eye evaluation will last typically about an hour, possibly more. 

As a teaching affiliate of New England College of Optometry, you will be seen by both a well-trained student or resident and the attending optometrist. This process adds a little more time to a standard exam at a non-teaching location.

Your clinician may dilate your pupils to get a clear view of your optic nerve and retina, but it is not necessary at every appointment.

At our center, a licensed optometrist will provide your care, working alongside our optometric students.

Discuss any changes in your eyesight since your last visit or any symptoms that concern you. You may also ask for advice about any health issues, injuries, or conditions, or inquire about new eyeglasses, sunglasses, contact lenses, or low vision devices prescriptions.

We offer same-day and urgent care appointments based on availability.

You should schedule an appointment if you are:

  • Having difficulty reading print on computer and newspapers, magazines, menus, or numbers/letters on your phone.
  • Rubbing your eyes frequently.
  • Having tired or burning eyes.
  • Experiencing blurred vision or double vision.
  • Experiencing frequent headaches or eyestrain when working on a computer or reading for long periods of time.
  • Having difficulty driving at night.
  • Having problems with glare.
  • Having symptoms of flashes and floaters.
  • Someone with diabetes, hypertension, or any other systemic or chronic disease.
  • At risk for certain systemic or eye diseases because of family history or other factors – i.e. diabetes, high-blood pressure.
  • Playing sports and having trouble judging distances between you, the ball, or other objects.
  • Losing track of a person or objects in your peripheral (side) vision.
  • Experiencing frequent near misses, accidents, or difficulty parking or driving.
  • Handling or using chemicals, power tools, or lawn and garden.

The frequency of eye exams depend on the age and health of the individual. View the American Optometric Association recommended examination frequency along with details of what is included in a comprehensive exam.

Optometry is more than vision tests. It’s about eye health. Optometrists, or doctors of optometry, are primary health care providers that specialize in eye care and visual health. They are trained to examine, diagnose, treat and manage disorders that affect the eye or vision.

Optometrists conduct eye exams, assess eye disease, write prescriptions, recommend specialized services and provide pre- and post- operative care for cataract surgery, refractive surgery (LASIK), and retinal surgery.

Optometrists, ophthalmologist, and opticians are part of a good eye health team.

  • Optometrist: An optometrist is a primary health care provider (OD) that specializes in eye care and visual health.
  • Ophthalmologist: An ophthalmologist is a medical doctor (MD) specializing in eye disease who may perform ocular surgery.
  • Optician: An optician is a professional who fits and grinds lenses, and dispenses glasses.
Keep in Mind

Access Services

Language and Interpreter Services

Interpretation Services: Each examination room has the capability to remotely connect patients and providers to over-the-phone LanguageLine interpretation services. This does not need to be requested in advance and is provided at no cost to the patient.

ASL Interpreters are available through Massachusetts Commission for the Deaf & Hard of Hearing (MCDHH). Patients needing ASL Interpreter services are asked to make appointments a minimum of two weeks in advance for non-urgent matters, as it can take two weeks to secure an interpreter.

It is the patient’s responsibility to request an ASL Interpreter at the time of scheduling. We will then coordinate with MCDHH to provide this service at no cost to the patient. A cancellation fee may apply if ASL Interpreter service is cancelled with less than 48 hours notice.

After Hours Emergencies

Call the on-call service at 617-262-2020 and follow the voice prompts to access the clinician on call.