All Blogs

My view as an ophthalmic technician

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

By: Toni Pichette, COMT

Related Medical Services:

My view as an opthalmic technician


My first impression was of single color from a distance, then the smooth finish of velvet as I looked with my naked eye in the wake of the light beam. Enlargement of the area and closer inspection revealed layers of shades melded together as my eye followed the spiny peaks down into the cavernous valleys. Single strands of colors twine together like a rope! Beyond this expanse of color, pushing forward into the darkness, my imagination awakens. Would I truly see into the soul of my patient’s eyes?  Could the poems and folklore be true?  - The ophthalmic technician’s first glimpse into the microscope during an eye exam.


What does an ophthalmic technician do?


An ophthalmic technician is a person who helps an ophthalmologist (eye doctor) with diagnostic tests and treatments to provide patient care. By assisting with tasks that do not require the doctors’ specific expertise, an ophthalmic technician allows the doctor to spend more time concentrating on the diagnostic and treatment functions he or she must personally perform.



I have heard many patients comment about how they would rather lose hearing than sight, so my role of ophthalmic technician in the clinical setting is invaluable. I am the first contact for the patient, the confidant for describing how loss of vision affects so many aspects of the patient’s life.


This does not mean my role here in the clinic is depressing and gloomy. The day is filled with excitement from the patient who regained sight from cataract surgery and knowing that I was the one who met them that first day for pre testing, that I was the one who counseled them on the recovery. My physician values and trusts me to present accurate information on what the patient’s vision and pretesting results were. He actively allows me to participate in caring for each patient with whom I come in contact. 


Consider a career as an ophthalmic technician.


I would encourage young people looking for a career to consider becoming an ophthalmic technician. You will never stop learning. There seems to always be an abundance of positions in this field and many of the staff in our clinic have longevity and seem to have long fulfilling careers.