The Eye Institute of West Florida was founded by Stephen M. Weinstock, M.D., FACS in 1974 with the goal of providing expert eye care for every eye disease while always putting the patient first. What started as a practice with one physician has expanded to become one of the largest subspecialty ophthalmology practices in Florida, with nine fellowship trained, specialty ophthalmologists, three general ophthalmologists, eight optometrists and a cataract and refractive cataract surgery fellow. The practice has five locations throughout Tampa Bay in Largo, St. Petersburg, Clearwater and South Tampa.
“Our physicians are accomplished ophthalmologists with subspecialty training in all major areas of ophthalmology,” Dr. Weinstock says. The Eye Institute has a specialist for every different ocular disease, including cataracts; refractive treatments, such as LASIK, Clear Lens Exchange or Raindrop Near Vision Inlay; glaucoma; retina, including macular degeneration and diabetic retinopathy; and oculoplastic procedures, such as blepharoplasty or eyelid surgery. Each specialist is an ophthalmologist (medical eye doctor) who has completed additional fellowship training for surgery related to a specific ocular condition, making them an expert in that area of ophthalmology.
“This is different from the general eye doctor, such as an optometrist or a general ophthalmologist, who has to try to diagnose and treat every eye disease until it gets to a point where he or she has to refer patients to a practice like ours,” Dr. Weinstock explains. The Eye Institute of West Florida is fortunate to have these services in one place, which is different than most practices. “When a new patient comes in, the examining physician will quickly determine why it is he or she can’t see the way they like. If it’s just a simple matter of prescribing glasses [or contacts], we can do that. But if there is a disease process, we have a specialist who can address and appropriately manage or treat the problem,” Dr. Weinstock adds.
We rely on our eyesight for so much in our lives, and eye disease threatening that dependency is frightening. It is essential to ensure that your eye care needs are in the hands of an expert, because caught early enough, many conditions are treatable.