If you are considering a career in the medical field of ophthalmology you might be thinking this is as specific as you will ever get. After all, you’ll spend as long as ten years in school to prepare yourself for work in this field, so after that scale of an investment you’d think the big decisions will finally be made. But the fact is this is just the beginning of the decision making process. Human beings rely on their eyesight more than any other sense, and because of that importance there are innumerable ways you can serve your fellow man in this capacity. Here are just a few of the different types of jobs in ophthalmology to give you an idea of the scope and the potential careers that will be open to you.
Some ophthalmologists specialize in the cornea and external diseases. You’ll focus on everything involving the cornea outward, including the eyelids. And there are dozens of ailments you’ll diagnose and treat in this specialty. You’ll see all sorts of microbial infections, tumors, general inflammation and corneal dystrophy. If you choose to focus in on this area you’ll likely study surgical procedures that will be employed to correct refractive issues and even corneal transplants.
As people age their eyes begin to fail. Some people deal with just slight issues, while others develop more serious ailments that can lead to blindness if left untreated. You could focus in on correcting cataracts, utilizing the latest in laser techniques to improve eyesight. You might instead choose to specialize in glaucoma treatment. This will see you focusing in on optic nerve damage, relieving intraocular pressure and even implanting drainage support for patients who require it.
Plastic surgery is a huge subspecialty in the medical field, and ophthalmology is no different. There are hundreds of practicing ophthalmic plastic surgeons, and the procedures they perform are wide and varied. You’ll help patients who are looking for cosmetic lid surgery that will given them a chance to return to the look from their lost youth. But not all plastic surgery is about vanity. You’ll also help perform reconstruction surgeries for patients who have had tumors removed or have been involved in traumatic accidents. Patients dealing with cancer treatments may also need your help, meaning you’ll study all of the applications of chemotherapy, radiotherapy and chemosurgery to improve the treatment of various diseases impacting the eye.
Eye issues do not only impact the aging members of society. In fact, pediatric ophthalmology is one of the largest specialties in the field. You’ll treat patients who are twenty years old or younger, many of whom are dealing with either a genetic abnormality that has been with them since birth or a developmental issue that has cropped up over several years. You’ll improve traumatic ailments, inflammatory issues and disorders that impact areas even broader than the ocular systems.
If you are passionate about the way in which the eyes are connected to other systems in the body, than neuro-ophthalmology might be the career for you. In this field you’ll study how ophthalmic and neurologic diseases interrelate. While in other more common situations you’ll likely spend time helping patients find eyewear wholesale from international eyewear companies, as a neuro-ophthalmologist you’ll see much more serious issues at play. You may not perform the actual surgeries, as they will likely be handled by neurosurgeons. But the local pathology that develops out of neurological disorders will offer a complex research opportunity that could make up your life’s work.