Author Topic: Asking my optometrist to check the prescription on glasses I didn't buy there?  (Read 2927 times)

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EMuir

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I went to an optometrist for an eye exam, my usual optometrist.  Due to my high prescription, buying lenses and frames at the store that is part of the business would have cost me over $600.  I can order a pair of glasses online for $100.  I told them that I'd buy from them if they even came down to $300, but of course they can't.

Here's the thing.  I paid my optometrist for the exam.  If my optometrist's office didn't also sell glasses, I wouldn't think twice about this... can I take the glasses I bought online into my optometrist to ask her to make sure they were made accurately to my prescription?  Is it part of her duty as my medical provider?  Or is it rude?


Slartibartfast

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I went to an optometrist for an eye exam, my usual optometrist.  Due to my high prescription, buying lenses and frames at the store that is part of the business would have cost me over $600.  I can order a pair of glasses online for $100.  I told them that I'd buy from them if they even came down to $300, but of course they can't.

Here's the thing.  I paid my optometrist for the exam.  If my optometrist's office didn't also sell glasses, I wouldn't think twice about this... can I take the glasses I bought online into my optometrist to ask her to make sure they were made accurately to my prescription?  Is it part of her duty as my medical provider?  Or is it rude?

It's fine, although I think it's something the optician should be able to do if you just need the physical lenses checked.  The rude way to do it is to go through the optical shop, get personally fit for a specific frame you like (using up quite a bit of the optician's time), then whip out your phone and buy it online.  Then bring the frames in when they don't fit right.

(Disclaimer: my father is an ophthalmologist who owns a small practice with also includes an optical shop.)

PastryGoddess

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Most optical retail optical shops here in the Mid Atlantic area of the US have a machine that can read your prescription.  I don't know if you have to have an appointment or what, because I always get my glasses checked when it's time to order new ones. 

I also have a very high prescription and I know it seems tempting to go with the cheaper option, but your lenses are the most important part of your glasses.  I watch several online frame websites and will buy from them during a sale, but I take them in to be fit for lenses.  Sometimes there are issues with the lenses fitting in, so I would have to change frames, but I haven't been turned away or refused service for bringing my own frames in.

steelstress

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I've done that.  They were very pleasant when I asked.  I was a patient, but purchased the glasses online.

EMuir

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Actually a Canadian show compared store vs online glasses and found the lenses were identical in quality, but in both cases the frames had issues.


magician5

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Just a comment from recent experience:

Paid full price for my eye examination, and was really careful to make sure I had full confidence in the prescription ("1 or 2? Let me see 1 again..."). Got written scrip including measured interpupillary distance. Ordered online from zennioptical.com.

The price was really right, though you're never realistically gonna get a pair for $6.95 (my four family members paid between $50 and $106). Each of us was thrilled with the result. Took a couple of days wearing the new glasses to make sure we had adjusted to any prescription changes, but in the end we were thrilled.

I'm not sure I'd go back in and ask for the bought-online lenses to be checked, but I might if I had reason to believe they were mismade (and I'm sure mistakes happen).
« Last Edit: April 18, 2013, 04:00:16 PM by magician5 »
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blue2000

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I've done that, although not for online glasses. I once had to ask an optician (politely) to check my glasses because they didn't feel right. She didn't seem bothered by the request. You might want to pick a time when they don't look busy, though, just so you aren't taking them away from a paying customer.
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peaches

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My optician has done this for me (checked to see if glasses I bought elsewhere fit the prescription).

That is something any optician or eye doctor (who has written a prescription for you) should be willing to do IMO. It is easy to do - as someone pointed out, there is a machine that reads the prescription. In fact, this is something a technician or assistant can do; it doesn't have to be the optician.

I would call ahead and ask. But I bet that it will not be a problem. 


Virg

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Two things to keep in mind is that firstly, they're making money off of you for the exam and care so the fact that you didn't use their shop for the glasses doesn't make your business a losing proposition, and second, it's a business so "it's not rude to ask" is a lot broader.  If they feel that you're taking advantage they could always say no or charge a fee for the check, but most practitioners won't bat an eye at the request because it's pretty easy for them to do and the goodwill means they're more likely to see you for your next exam.

Virg

Carotte

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I think you're more than fine asking.

When I have a problem with my glasses and have to have the frame tightened I go to the place I bought them, don't know if they reconize the frame but they never checked I was one of their client. I know I can go to pretty much any store if I have a problem, if they're not busy they'll do screw tightening or cleaning..

This thread reminded me to go look online for my next pair (I'll probably have to ask them as a birthday gift if they're too expensive), and found an online store that has a few partner stores where I can actually try them on, and they'll check the distance between pupils, which is the thing you have to look out for if you want glasses actually made for you.
I can even have them delivered there and they'll check the fit.

EMuir

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Thank you, I feel better now. :)  I bought two pair actually, one from ClearlyContacts and one from Zenni.  The Zenni ones were about half the price of the ClearlyContacts ones, and I intended them to be my backup pair, but I find I actually prefer them. LOL!  My sight seems ok in both of them, but I'd kind of like to be sure. Yes I'm a bit paranoid. :P

VorFemme

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I took in glasses from another local store that didn't "feel right" - turns out that the focal point reading on my progressive bifocals would been just below the lower frame.  No wonder I couldn't see to read, sew, or embroider!  The focal point had been cut off!

First pair from the same shop (which I no longer go to) had the left focal point skewed to look at my nose, not straight ahead.  I was so glad that I got them back to the shop in time to be remade in the warranty period.

Because when I brought it up at the fitting, I was "reminded" that it was a new prescription and it might take me a couple of weeks to adjust to it".

Wonderful Son-In-Law got fed the same line of malarkey by a "new" doctor (who is no longer working at that practice) and ended up taking them back insisting that he could not adjust AFTER the free period ended.  The next exam was by their old doctor and his next prescription changed back to the one on his old glasses (before the ones that he never "adjusted" to).  Apparently the new guy was giving EVERYONE stronger glasses so that they would sell glasses to EVERYONE who came in for an exam.....

I'm still going back to the place that "read" the prescription & told me about the focal point not being inside the frame......
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Peregrine

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Former optician.....Slarti's advice is right on.

Just don't ever expect to go into an optical dispensary with an existing pair of glasses, tell the optician to read the Rx in your lenses, and just make you a new pair with that prescription.  The FDA regulates the issuance of eyeglasses and contact lenses and an office can get in big time trouble for that kind of thing.

Also, don't try using an expired Rx to get contacts or glasses.   ::)

Most places will do free adjustments and repairs for you, but I would be sparing using that service if I had bought the glasses from an online vendor.

MOM21SON

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My father is a retired optician.  He owned a very large business and there was no problem asking for this, repairs, adjustments, etc. 

It actually makes me sad that people have resorted to online, but its the way of the world I guess.

Slight Highjack.

I go to a very small place. Exams are done twice a week.  I cannot say enough about how great the opticians are.  They always remind me of what my insurance covers, have many frames within that range.  Since I am allergic to silicone, they have a stock of non silicone nosepads for me and anyone else. 


magician5

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My father is a retired optician.  He owned a very large business and there was no problem asking for this, repairs, adjustments, etc. 

It actually makes me sad that people have resorted to online, but its the way of the world I guess.

Thanks for the first-hand info. But realistically, when optometrists (especially chains) seemingly ALL advertise "2 pairs just $69.99 including free exam" and you can't get out of there for under $300 ... and that's for ONE pair ... it's enough to make folks give up.
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