Why Do You Need An Oculoplastic Surgeon?
WHY DO YOU NEED AN OCULOPLASTIC SURGEON?
Who are oculoplastic surgeons?
Oculoplastic surgeons are eye surgeons or ophthalmologists who have further training in plastic surgeries around the eyes. The benefit of this group of specialists who are trained in dual specialty is that they are able to correlate the aesthetic component with the functional component. As oculoplastic surgeon is able to assess the visual function, they are able to give advice to the patients timing for surgeries especially when the visual function got threatened. They can reach diagnosis for an oculoplastic condition, perform surgeries and procedure such as botulinum toxin and filler for rejuvenation and functional purpose. Their familiarity with the anatomy in the periocular region means that they are able to provide targeted treatment and it is probably safer to have this delicate area to be treated by them.
In Malaysia, all oculoplastic surgeons are ophthalmologists. That means after spending 5-6 years passing the final medical exam, they went through houseman training and subsequently specialty training either locally through the master programme or trained under supervision by accredited consultant and underwent fellowship exam. For those doctors who chose to trained overseas, they usually passed the fellowship exam and went through a structured training recognised by the country. Subsequently they went through subspecialty training in oculoplastics of 1- 3 years in duration. In Malaysia, subspecialists are trained under Ministry of Health for three years period and they are only board certified if they passed the final subspecialty exit exam.
The summary of training pathway an accredited oculoplastic surgeon in Malaysia:
5-6 years : Medical school
1-2 years: Housemanship
1-3 years: general medical/surgical training
4 years: (Malaysia) : Master in ophthalmology or
7-10 years (UK) : FRCOphth and CCT (Ophthalmology)
1-3 years (Malaysia/UK r other overseas country)
Lifelong learning: Attend different course/conferences to improve practice.
In Malaysia, there are increasing number of ophthalmologists who underwent further subspecialty training to become oculoplastic surgeon. It is important for patient who have problems with their eyelid, watery eyes, orbit, abnormal eyelid movement such as blepharospasm or socket problems to consult the doctor with appropriate training and experiences. Recently, Oculoplastic interest group is being set up under umbrella of Malaysia Society of Ophthalmology to include all oculoplastics surgeons in Malaysia. The aim is to promote awareness of oculoplastic surgeries and to encourage research among oculoplastics conditions in Malaysia.