Vitreoretinal Surgery and Diseases (Retina)

See also: Macular Degeneration and Retinoblastoma

Chris Bergstrom, MD
Blaine Cribbs, MD
Andrew M. Hendrick, MD
G. Baker Hubbard III, MD
Timothy W. Olsen, MD
Purnima Patel, MD
Joshua Robinson, MD
Jiong Yan, MD
Steven Yeh, MD


Vitreoretinal (retina) specialists are ophthalmologists specializing in treatment of all retina diseases including age-related macular degeneration, retinal detachment, macular holes, and diabetic retinopathy. Following medical school, these physicians complete a three-residency followed by a two-year fellowship in vitreoretinal diseases and surgery.

Emory Eye Center retina specialists are well known for treating many complex retinal diseases including advanced retinopathy of prematurity, cancers of the eye, complex surgical disorders as well as genetic eye disease.  The retina section is well-regarded as one of the finest training programs for vitreoretinal fellows.

Pioneering retinal research, such as innovative new drug treatments, macular translocation surgery and new laser treatments, conducted at Emory Eye Center may revolutionize the treatment of macular degeneration, the leading cause of blindness in individuals over age 60.

Techniques and instruments developed by Eye Center retina surgeons for surgery on the retina and vitreous, the jelly-like substance that fills the eye, are used by ophthalmic surgeons from across the globe.


Educational videos on the retina and retinal diseases:

What is the retina animation image

The retina  The retina is the innermost layer of blood vessels and nerves that serves as the “film” of the eye. The retina receives visual images and transmits signals that are conveyed to the brain by the optic nerve through its nerve endings, the rods and cones, allowing us to see objects.

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What is diabetic retinopathy

Diabetic retinopathy 

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What is the retina animation image

Age-related macular degeneration 

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What is the retina animation image

Retinal detachment 

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What is the retina animation image

Retinal tear 

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A History of Vitreoretinal Surgery: An Emory Eye Center Film


This film is also viewable in HD/full screen. Click on the [ ] box on the bottom right of the viewing pane to enter full screen. Press esc to exit that screen.

Description:  On the invitation of Henry Edelhauser, PhD, six talented innovators of vitreoretinal surgery gathered in March 2012 on the Emory University campus to spend an historic day participating in the creation of this film. These pathfinders give their testimony to the early years of vitreoretinal surgery--between 1968-78: George Blankenship (retired, Hershey Eye Center); Jean Marie Parel, (Bascom Palmer, McKnight Vision Research Center); Thomas Aaberg Sr. (chair emeritus, Emory Eye Center); Helmutt Buettner (Mayo Medical Center); Henry Edelhauser (professor and former director of research, Emory Eye Center); and Gary Abrams (Kresge Eye Institute).

A highly delicate procedure, vitreoretinal surgery treats problems involving the retina --the macula and vitreous fluid--such as those visual problems caused by diabetic retinopathy and retinal tears.

"Vitreoretinal Surgery is a relatively very young discipline, born in the 1960s and 70s. At its infancy, the early pioneer's dream was to create a unique surgical approach that could solve an unmet clinical need. The success of the field came as a result of superb timing and an evolving knowledge in precision microfluidics and microengineering. The key ingredient that enabled such a transformation was an open, collegial spirit of innovation and cooperation among leaders. This video highlights the heroes and pioneers, who solved key issues, developed prototypes, created the solutions, and built the technology that forms the foundation of . . . modern Vitreoretinal Surgery. The success cannot be attributed to one individual. Instead, to a collaborative spirit, directed toward helping patients with complex vitreoretinal diseases. We, the faculty at Emory, are very proud to be well represented in this group of pioneers."

-- Timothy W. Olsen, MD, director, Emory Eye Center, 4/12/12

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