We had a post earlier regarding possible damage to the poster's eye by a short exposure to a laser. I'd like to clarify the qualifications of "eye doctors" in an attempt to help people get prompt, effective care. Many people see optometrists and consider them "eye doctors". Optometrists are qualified and licensed to permit them to evaluate refractive conditions like near-sightedness, far-sightedness, astigmatism, and presbyopia (inability to focus at short distances, like when reading). They can prescribe corrective lenses, which are dispensed and fitted by opticians. Optometrists are not licensed to provide medical care for your eyes. That is the job of Ophthalmologists. If you suspect you have injured an eye with a laser, foreign body, etc, get to an Ophthalmologist right away. If you go to see an Optometrist, the Optometrist will have to refer you to an Ophthalmologist, which could be wasting precious time. Your vision is very important. I worked as a network administrator and optician for a very large (by Maine standards) Ophthalmological practice. While I was there, we had only one Optometrist on staff, and her specialty was prescribing and fitting contact lenses. All the other doctors were surgeons with eye-related medical specialties. Our doctors held regional seminars periodically at which they taught Optometrists to recognize medical conditions of the eye, so the patient could be referred and treated properly. I learned a lot because I was the one that burned their PowerPoint slides for them.