Ophthalmology Physician Salary

Ophthalmology Physician Salary


An ophthalmologist is a physician trained in treating all disorders of the eye. Do you wear glasses? Did you wish you didn’t? Specialists in ophthalmology can fix that for you. Yes, with that Lasik procedure.

But that’s a small subset of society with willing pcokets. The main sources of patients for ophthalmologists are the X million baby boomers with cataracts and age-related macular degeneration.

Ophthalmic physicians can be in both the office and the operating room without much, if any, hospital call. But if you do want to be in the hospital, there are such things as ophthalmic emergencies.

Ophthalmology Physician Salary


Just how much do ophthalmology physicians make? A lot!

The median expected salary is nearly $250,000. That’s higher than 10 other specialties in the medical field.

Surprisingly, starting salaries out of residency is only $138,000 but that shoots up to $314,000 after a few years of experience. The highest reported salaries are over $500,000!

If you sub-specialize within the ophthalmology field, you can earn much more. Retina specialists earn $280,000 out of residency, $469,000 after a few years of experience, and a max of $716,000!


To become an ophthalmologist, physicians need to do 4 years of residency. The first year is a preliminary year that exposes a resident physician to all aspects of adult medicine. Then, they do 3 years of training in the field of ophthalmology. There are currently 117 ophthalmology residency programs offering over 300 residency spots.

Ophthalmologists have several fellowships they can do to sub-specialize. The surgical fellowships are mostly 2 years long while the other ones are only 1 year long. The opportunities include :

  • Oculoplastic & Orbital Surgery
  • Retinal and Vitreous Surgery
  • Pediatric Ophthalmology & Strabismus
  • Glaucoma
  • Cornea
  • Neuro-ophthalmology
  • Ocular Pathology
  • Uveitis

Ophthalmologists are specialists of the eye with medical and surgical treatment capabilities. The training is fair and yields a very good income and their panel of patients is never ending. After all, our eyesight is one of the most valued senses in daily life. If you want to help patients with that, this might be a good field for you.


Salary.com, Physician – Ophthalmology Physician Salary
Medscape Compensation Survey
Allied Physicians – Physician Salary Survey

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