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Overheard Optometry

15 Insanely Frustrating Things That Eyecare Patients Really Said

‘I don’t see why in the hell you would need to know that!’

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AFTER WORKING IN EYECARE for a while, you learn to take most patient questions and comments in stride. Every now and then, however, you hear something that makes you wonder if you should have pursued that dream career as a top chef in Shanghai.

But would the profession be half as enjoyable without the funny stories?

Take a look at these posts from the Facebook and Instagram pages of Overheard Optometry, featuring stories submitted anonymously by eyecare professionals all over the world.

I mean, the patient does have a point.

One can understand why she’d never want to get an eye exam ever again.

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As we find a stack of previous autorefraction slips and retinal photos from the past 15 years in the patient’s file.

See versus read. Two very, very different words. Safe to say our patients are perfectionists.

Nobody said it was easy — somebody had to do it. There are friendships being broken at the optometrist’s office.

Location: undisclosed #overheardoptometry #bifocals #patients

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Replace the word “retinal detachment” with “astigmatism” and I guarantee you’d get a different reaction.

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We can never seem to mind our own business.

When you remove the phoropter away from the patient’s face to uncover the trollface meme.

Finland #overheardoptometry #snellen #1or2 #or3 #eyeexam #finland

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So … how sure are you that you’ve been taking care of your own kids, and not someone else’s?

Greece #overheardoptometry #myopia #highmyopia #glasses #contacts #greece

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Losing hope, day by day.

Therapist, optometrist, potato, pohtahto.

*Facepalm*

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What’s worse: no contacts on at a contact lens follow-up, or no glasses from a new patient during an exam?

Our patients just have a way with words.

About that letter of resignation.

Elvira Derhovsepian is an ophthalmic scribe and the creator of the social media platform @overheardoptometry, a community of people who share their unique (and sometimes so very common) stories in eyecare. Derhovsepian recently published the first volume of the Overheard Optometry book, now available at Amazon.com, and enjoys freelance writing and editing in her free time.

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Overheard Optometry

18 Eyecare Patients Who Diagnosed Themselves and Were Incredibly Wrong

‘My eyes just hurt so bad. … It’s my stigmas.’

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THE HUMAN BODY IS complex, but the general public can at least point to the location of the heart, the stomach or the bicep muscles. If not, they at least have an idea of how to say the words.

The world of eyecare, however, presents its own intricate terminology. People don’t usually sprinkle their daily conversation with terms such as glaucoma, astigmatism, macular degeneration or cataracts.

Wouldn’t you rather be talking about guacamole? Stigmata? Molecular generation? Cadillacs?

Learning about the different parts of the eye is challenging, as many of our patients find. So here are our 18 favorite moments captured on Overheard Optometry with patients self-diagnosing themselves using creative ocular terminology.

1. Pretty sure there is no uterus in the eye. A for effort though.

 

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Anonymous location • #overheardoptometry #uterus #eye #bloodvessel

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2. Not sure whether to be amazed or terrified.

 

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Manila, Philippines #overheardoptometry #weatherforecast #eyeweatherdetector #optometryinphilippines

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3. Looks like we’re due for an anti-anti-reflective coating eye drop prescription.

 

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Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, Canada #overheardoptometry #allergic #glasses #antireflectivecoating #optometryincanada

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4. Something tells me you probably shouldn’t use hand wipes from KFC for your eyes. Not sure what it is.

 

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Lancaster, England, UK #overheardoptometry #eroticheart #heartbeat #warfarin #arrhythmia #optometryinengland

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5. Unless your eyes are capable of inhaling then by all means, who are we to stop you?!

 

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Paris, France #overheardoptometry #asthma #astigmatism #inhaler #ventolin #optometryinfrance

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6. Hope this optometrist wasn’t trying to cushion the truth.

 

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Portugal #overheardoptometry #pillowmarks #optometryinportugal

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7. That escalated a tad bit too quickly.

 

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Los Angeles, California, USA #overheardoptometry #jaundice #ocular #optometryincalifornia

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8. Sounds like a case of blinker fluid.

 

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Mount Horeb, Wisconsin, USA #overheardoptometry #eyefluid #tears #vitreoushumor #whoknows #optometryinwisconsin

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9. I don’t even know where to begin. Rugby ball? Pupil?

 

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Cape Town, South Africa #overheardoptometry #rugbyball #rugbyballpupil #astigmatism #optometryinsouthafrica

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10. All this stigma about stigmas…makes me wonder why we’re talking about the Crucifixion? It’s just astigmatism!

 

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Texas, USA #overheardoptometry #astigmatism #stigma #optometryintexas

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11. Don’t try this at Japanese gardens. Leave the cod fish alone.

 

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Scotland #overheardoptometry #codliveroil #cataract #herbalremedies #cantmakethisshitup #optometryinscotland

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12. Are you flippin’ kidding?

 

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Madrid, Spain #overheardoptometry #penguins #pinguecula #optometryinspain

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13. Watt are you talking about?

 

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High Point, North Carolina, USA #overheardoptometry #titanium #nickel #frames #lolwut #optometryinnorthcarolina

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14. Sounds pretty flaky if you ask me.

 

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Bend, Oregon, USA #overheardoptometry #oliveoil #potatochips #eyeremedy #dryeyes #optometryinoregon

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15. That could have made a turn for the worst, really quickly.

 

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Richmond, England, UK #overheardoptometry #chlamydia #cataracts #optometryinengland

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16. Almond or soy?

 

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Manchester, New Hampshire, USA #overheardoptometry #coa #boiledmilk #milk #eyeremedy #dryeyes #optometryinnewhampshire

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17. Looks like we’re crossing over a new territory here…

 

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Anonymous location #overheardoptometry #religiouscataracts #catholics #cataracts

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18. Sounds like an eye-land in Greece.

 

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Burbank, California, USA #overheardoptometry #misakostakos #maculardegeneration #optometryincalifornia

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Overheard Optometry

15 Ways Patients Tried to Deny That Their Vision Got Worse

‘Vision is a state of mind. If my mind is clear, my vision is clear.’

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THERE’S SOMETHING infuriating about patients who claim “I can see fine” but have 48-point type on their phone and a selfie stick to hold the phone at a comfortable distance. Meanwhile they’re squinting to read the Wi-Fi password in the waiting area.

Why won’t they just admit that they can’t read their books or street signs? Maybe they’re all in on this massive, worldwide joke and planning to force eye doctors into an early retirement.

At least there’s one upside: ECPs can rejoice in sharing their patients’ unique claims of how their vision did not change. Can your patients beat these stories?

Certainly, Captain Jack Sparrow. Who needs the other eye anyway?

 

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Phoenix, Arizona, USA • #overheardoptometry #visualacuity #optometryinarizona

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Maybe I can pick this up at my next yoga session.

 

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Los Angeles, California, USA #overheardoptometry #bcva #stateofmind #vision #optometryincalifornia

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How often do people read, use the computer and drive anyway?

 

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Glendale, California, USA #overheardoptometry #patients #denial #glasses #optometryincalifornia

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Companies should invest in rechargeable prescription lenses already.

 

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Wichita, Kansas, USA #overheardoptometry #optical #glasses #prescription #medicine #optometryinkansas

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Just leave it to the experts in space…

 

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Utrecht, Netherlands #overheardoptometry #cosmos #myopia #contactlenses #myopicdenial #optometryinthenetherlands

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Looks like this optometrist got caught read-handed.

 

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Sherman Oaks, California, USA #overheardoptometry #bifocal #progressive #glasses #addpower #bifocalize #optometryincalifornia

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Maybe the optometrist was having an off day and didn’t mean to prescribe glasses last time.

 

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Florence, Kentucky, USA #overheardoptometry #glasses #denial #grocerystore #optometryinkentucky

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Why on Earth would we want to do that?

 

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College Station, Texas, USA #overheardoptometry #optometryintexas

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There’s distance, then there’s television distance.

 

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📍Charleston, South Carolina, USA 🇺🇸 • #overheardoptometry #tvglasses #glasses #optometryinsouthcarolina

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Or just carry that selfie stick with you everywhere …

 

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Singapore #overheardoptometry #optician #readingnglasses #toldyouso #optometryinsingapore

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Why didn’t the phoropter fix this patient’s eyes? We’ll never know.

 

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Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA #overheardoptometry #eyeemergency #optometryinmichigan

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But no changes at all. You see, vision isn’t actually seeing. It’s a state of mind.

 

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Eau Claire, Wisconsin, USA #overheardoptometry #denial #optometryinwisconsin

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Good save, optometrist.

 

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Bromley, Kent, UK #overheardoptometry #eyeexam #optometryinengland

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They’re onto us.

 

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Manila, Philippines #overheardoptometry #astigmatism #culprit #optometryinphilippines

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Have we been reading letters wrong this entire time?

 

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Bishop Auckland, England, United Kingdom #overheardoptometry #learntoread #shapes #learnnewthings #optometryinengland

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Overheard Optometry

11 of the Weirdest Things that Eye Doctors Heard from Patients

“When I smoke weed, why do my pupils dilate like I’m on speed?”

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AS AN EYECARE PRACTITIONER, you know that certain commonly asked questions and comments — “What’s astigmatism?”, “Are the dilation drops necessary?”, “I can’t read up close anymore” — come with the territory. But occasionally patients also say things that are jaw-dropping, cringe-worthy or downright bizarre.

Today, we bring you a few of our favorite weird remarks that have been shared by optometrists, opticians and optometric technicians.

1. “When I smoke weed, why do my pupils dilate like I’m on speed?” –Dr. Sarah Lyn Sliva, optometrist, Saskatchewan, Canada

2. Patient: “So Doc, am I near-farted or what?”

Doctor: “I hope not, I’m standing right beside you!” –Anonymous

(Patient accidentally combined ‘near’ and ‘far’-sighted together)

3. Patient (to female optometrist): “Didn’t you used to be a man?” –Anonymous

4. “Years ago I had a patient see the progressive identifiers in his lenses. He was convinced they contained personal information and that it was a government conspiracy. He insisted I remake the lenses without the markings. I happily said that’s not possible, but he could switch to a lined bifocal, which he did.” –Kristi Johnson, optician, Rochester Hills, MI

5. Optometrist: “OK, now that you’re dilated, we are going to do the internal portion of your eye exam.”

Patient: “Um, OK. Does that mean you want me to take my pants off?” –Anonymous, technician, DE

6. “The funniest thing that I’ve encountered was when a patient asked me if I was going to check him for gonorrhea as it runs in the family; I politely asked, ‘Do you mean glaucoma?’” –Dr. Steven Koganovsky, optometrist, Fort Lauderdale, FL

7. Low-vision elderly patient: “This is my bad eye! I can’t see any of the ladies with this eye!”

Doctor: “Your wife is sitting right there!”

Patient: “It’s OK. She’s hard of hearing!” –Dr. Sarah Truman, Optometrist, Wichita, KS

8. “I had a follow-up a few years ago in which I placed a woman on Muro 128 ointment for Fuch’s Dustrophy. She came in for appointment and her cornea looked chewed up. I was dumbfounded. I asked her if she was taking her ointment as directed. She said she was. I asked to show me the ointment to make sure it was the correct one from the pharmacy and she pulls out Vagisil cream. She said she read the labels and it was ‘safe for delicate areas’ and assumed it was okay for her eye.” –Dr. Angela Tsai, optometrist, Fredericksburg, VA

9. Optometrist: “Are you taking any medication?”

Patient: “Does weed count? It really should, legalize it.” –Anonymous

10. “Patient called and was very concerned her sold her plutonium frames and was confused as why we would sell her radioactive frames that cause cancer. We politely informed her that they were titanium.” –Dr. Julie Hart, Optometrist, Hart Family Eyecare, West Plains, MO

11. “My glasses have prism in the left eye for astigmatism.” –Anonymous

Can you share any similar stories? Submit yours to @OverheardOptometry on Instagram or Facebook through direct message, or send an email to overheardoptometry@gmail.com.

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