Meet a Specialist: Louis Pasquale, MD
Second-year Temple University ophthalmology resident Louis Pasquale, MD, thought there should be more progress in the treatment of glaucoma. This realization spurred his decision to complete a glaucoma fellowship at Johns Hopkins University Hospital. Dr. Pasquale is now a glaucoma specialist and director of the Glaucoma Service at Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary and remains dedicated to improving treatment options for patients, conducting research and training future physicians.
Glaucoma is a condition that causes damage to the optic nerve. A healthy optic nerve carries visual information from the eye to the brain. However, when the optic nerve becomes damaged, vision is lost. As a glaucoma specialist, Dr. Pasquale treats patients who are diagnosed with this condition, which is one of the leading causes of blindness in the United States and throughout the world.
Because there is currently no cure, people diagnosed with glaucoma will most likely have the disease for the rest of their lives. Treatments are aimed at slowing or stopping the progression of vision loss. Patients must often take a regimen of eye drops several times a day to control their condition. Living with glaucoma can also involve multiple visits to a doctor’s office each year for regular and necessary follow-up care.
To improve overall patient care and treatment options, Dr. Pasquale is investigating how genes interact with the environment to cause glaucoma. In fact, he was awarded a grant as part of the National Institutes of Health’s Genes, Environment & Heath Initiative to rapidly scan the entire human genome in order to discover the genetic determinants of primary open angle glaucoma.
In addition to research aimed at improving patient care, Dr. Pasquale also teaches, passing on his knowledge to medical students and trainees of all levels, as well as to other physicians. He is the director of the glaucoma fellowship program and presents at a number of educational conferences throughout the year. “You can never take the audience for granted when you’re teaching,” says Dr. Pasquale. “You have to prepare, and when you prepare, you learn,” he says.
He not only reaches out to medical students, residents and practicing physicians, but also uses his skills to assist health care organizations that may not have immediate access to experts in ophthalmology. Along with his other responsibilities, Dr. Pasquale is involved in an initiative to use telemedicine technologies to advance ophthalmic healthcare. This developing technology allows physicians with patients who don’t have immediate access to an ophthalmologist to receive ophthalmic consultations through the use of information technology.
“All of our efforts are aimed at improving treatment and access for patients,” says Dr. Pasquale. “The ability to provide better care is what I strive for every day,” he says.
Contact Dr. Pasquale's office at 617-573-3674.
View Dr. Pasquale's online bio for more information.