Vitreoretinal Disease & Surgery Fellowship Program

Doctors speaking at a tableEach year, the Tufts Medical Center/New England Eye Center (NEEC) and Ophthalmic Consultants of Boston (OCB) sponsor 2 vitreoretinal surgery fellows. The vitreoretinal fellowship at Tufts/New England Eye Center and Ophthalmic Consultants of Boston is a two-year clinical and research fellowship that offers comprehensive training in the surgical and medical management of vitreoretinal diseases. The program has a long tradition, of over 25 years, of training vitreoretinal specialists. Fellows who have graduated from the Tufts/NEEC and OCB vitreoretinal fellowship have gone on to join many leading academic and private practices around the country.

The fellow is supervised by staff surgeons in the evaluation of patients, and actively participates in patient care which includes differential diagnosis, diagnostic techniques, and medical and surgical management of retinal diseases. Fellows are introduced to the diagnosis and management of specialized vitreoretinal subspecialties including pediatric retina, ocular tumors, uveitis, and retinal degenerations. The fellow is expected to develop independent judgment and technical skills in an environment devoted to excellence in patient care. The fellow also works closely with residents and medical students with ample opportunity for teaching. The fellow is expected to take emergency calls with staff surgeon support.

Vitreoretinal Surgery

Between Tufts/NEEC and OCB, the fellows receive vitreoretinal surgical training from over a dozen faculty members. Fellows benefit greatly from learning a diversity of clinical and surgical approaches to treat a wide variety of diseases. The fellow is directly involved in the pre-operative evaluation, intra-operative decision making, and post-operative management of all surgical patients. Vitreoretinal surgery fellows become well versed in both scleral buckling and vitrectomy techniques, such as membrane peeling with delamination and segmentation, air/fluid exchange, retinotomy and retinectomy, endolaser, and the use of gas, silicone oil and perfluorocarbon liquid tamponade, and secondary intraocular lens placement. It is anticipated that the fellow will gain proficiency in the management of retinal detachments, proliferative diabetic retinopathy, proliferative vitreoretinopathy, intraocular foreign bodies, giant retinal tears, intraocular tumors, posterior uveitis, macular holes, epiretinal membranes, endophthalmitis, IOL-related posterior segment complications, and retinopathy of prematurity.

Research

Rich opportunities exist for research projects in a variety of basic science and clinical areas. Tufts/NEEC and OCB are both actively engaged in numerous industry-sponsored clinical trials in retinal diseases. Fellows may take advantage of our abundant patient populations and internal grant funding sources to devise their own prospective and outcomes-based clinical research.
Most past fellows have published scientific articles in peer-reviewed journals, and also have opportunities to publish numerous case reports, review articles, and book chapters. Previous clinical studies at Tufts/NEEC and OCB have included experimental and clinical studies of new laser technology, the use of exogenous chromophores (dyes) for selective ablation of blood vessels, experimental investigations of pharmacologic inhibitors of neovascularization, and evaluations of clinical outcomes in a variety of retinal diseases.

In addition, Tufts/NEEC has a rich history of being a leader in retinal imaging research (link to OCT history page). Vitreoretinal surgery fellows have vast opportunities to pursue a variety of research projects in this field in particular.

Affiliated Hospitals

Vitreoretinal surgery fellows split their time evenly between Tufts/New England Eye Center and Ophthalmic Consultants of Boston (OCB). The clinic at Tufts/NEEC is a private practice setting for subspecialty referral ophthalmologic care within the Tufts Medical Center. While at Tufts/NEEC, the fellow is also responsible for examining premature infants at the Floating Hospital for Infants and Children, which is in the Tufts Medical Center complex, as well as accompanying attending doctors to Surgisite Boston (a dedicated ophthalmic ambulatory surgery center in Waltham, MA) once or twice a month during their second year.

Ophthalmic Consultants of Boston is a busy multispecialty private practice located at 50 Staniford Street in the heart of Boston. Vitreoretinal surgery fellows rotate between Tufts/NEEC and OCB, and spend half their time at each institution. There is a surgery center at OCB where the fellows receive extensive vitreoretinal surgical training with the OCB faculty.

Tufts/New England Eye Center Faculty

Caroline R. Baumal, MD
Dr. Baumal completed her residency at the University of Toronto, as well as a fellowship in vitreoretinal surgery at Wills Eye Hospital and a fellowship in medical retina and laser at Tufts/New England Eye Center.

Shilpa J. Desai, MD
Dr. Desai completed her residency at the University of California in San Francisco and her vitreoretinal surgery fellowship at Tufts/New England Eye Center and Ophthalmic Consultants of Boston.

Jay S. Duker, MD
Dr. Duker is the Director of the New England Eye Center. He completed both his residency and vitreoretinal surgery fellowship training at Wills Eye Hospital.

Michelle C. Liang, MD
Dr. Liang completed her residency at Tufts/New England Eye Center and her vitreoretinal surgery fellowship at Tufts/New England Eye Center and Ophthalmic Consultants of Boston.

Nora W. Muakkassa, MD
Dr. Muakkassa completed her residency and medical retina fellowship training at Tufts/New England Eye Center.

Elias Reichel, MD
Dr. Reichel is the Director of Vitreoretinal Services as well as Electroretinography Service. He completed his residency at the Massachusetts Eye & Ear Infirmary and his vitreoretinal surgery fellowship at Tufts/New England Eye Center.

Christopher Robinson, MD
Dr. Robinson completed his residency at the University of Iowa College of Medicine and medical retina fellowship training at Tufts/New England Eye Center.

Adam H. Rogers, MD
Dr. Rogers completed his residency at Boston University School of Medicine and his vitreoretinal surgery fellowship at Tufts/New England Eye Center.

Nadia K. Waheed, MD
Dr. Waheed completed residency and vitreoretinal surgery fellowship at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary.

Andre J. Witkin, MD
Dr. Witkin completed an imaging fellowship and his residency at Tufts/New England Eye Center and vitreoretinal surgery fellowship at Wills Eye Institute.

Ophthalmic Consultants of Boston Faculty

Tina S. Cleary, MD
Dr. Cleary completed her residency at the University of Texas Southwestern and her vitreoretinal surgery fellowship at Tufts/New England Eye Center and Ophthalmic Consultants of Boston.

Miriam P. Englander, MD
Dr. Englander completed her residency at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary and her vitreoretinal surgery fellowship at the Cole Eye Institute of Cleveland Clinic.

Jeffrey S. Heier, MD
Dr. Heier is the Co-President and Medical Director, Director of the Vitreoretinal Service, and Director of Retina Research at OCB. He completed his residency at Fitzsimmons Army Medical Center and his vitreoretinal surgery fellowship at Tufts/New England Eye Center and Ophthalmic Consultants of Boston.

Anthony Joseph, MD
Dr. Joseph completed his residency at the Jules Stein Eye Institute of the University of California in Los Angeles, and his vitreoretinal fellowship at Tufts/New England Eye Center and Ophthalmic Consultants of Boston.

Michael G. Morley, MD, MHCM
Dr. Morley completed his residency at Boston University and his vitreoretinal surgery fellowship training at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary. He also received a Master’s in Health Care Management from the Harvard School of Public Health.

David C. Reed, MD
Dr. Joseph completed his residency at the Jules Stein Eye Institute of the University of California in Los Angeles, and his vitreoretinal fellowship at Wills Eye Institute.

Chirag P. Shah, MD, MPH
Dr. Shah completed both his residency and vitreoretinal surgery fellowship training at Wills Eye Hospital. He also received a Master’s in Public Health from the Harvard School of Public Health.

Torsten W. Wiegand, MD, PhD
Dr. Wiegand completed his residency at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary and his vitreoretinal surgery fellowship at Tufts/New England Eye Center and Ophthalmic Consultants of Boston. Before his medical training, he also received a PhD in Biochemistry from the University of Wisconsin.

Appointment

  • Vitreoretinal fellowship appointments are for 2 years and run from July to July (exact dates may vary from year to year).
  • Two vitreoretinal fellowship appointments are awarded annually. Tufts/New England Eye Center and Ophthalmic Consultants of Boston participate in the Ophthalmology Fellowship Matching Program for surgical fellowships. See details below about applying.

Application

Please click here to see our program profile on the San Francisco Match Web site – www.sfmatch.org To register with the San Francisco Ophthalmology Matching Program (OMP), please contact them at 415-447-0350 or by email at help@sfmatch.org. All letters of recommendation and additional materials should be sent to the OMP.

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