Medical ophthalmology

Medical ophthalmologists are doctors who prevent, diagnose and treat eye conditions which are related to systemic disease such as diabetes.

This page provides useful information on the nature of the work, the common procedures/interventions, sub-specialties and other roles that may interest you.

Doctor examining patient

Nature of the work

Medical ophthalmologists are doctors trained in both general (internal) medicine and ophthalmology. They manage eye disorders that are particularly related to systemic (ie whole-body) disease such as diabetes, hypertension, atherosclerosis, inflammation, infection and malignancy. Ocular inflammatory disorders may be the first manifestation of systemic disease and it is important that the whole patient is investigated and treated, not just the presenting organ. Their role is different from ophthalmologists who are specialists in the surgical and medical treatment of diseases and injuries in and around the eye.

Medical ophthalmologists treat conditions such as:

Common procedures/interventions

These include:

Good stereoscopic binocular corrected visual acuity is required for a career in medical ophthalmology.


There are no CCT sub-specialties or associated sub-specialties for medical ophthalmology. However, UKNOSIG is a special interest group for those interested in neuro-ophthalmology.

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Other roles that may interest you

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