The Retina Service at Massachusetts Eye and Ear was founded in 1947 and is one of the largest subspecialty groups of its kind in the country. We use the most advanced tools in the diagnosis and treatment of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and other retinal diseases. We are also engaged in clinical trials that give you access to cutting-edge treatments.
Why is a Healthy Retina Important?
The retina is a layer of nerve tissue in the back of the eye that functions like the film in a camera. It takes light that the lens has focused and converts it into electrical signals, which are then transported to the brain for visual recognition.
The macula is the central part of the retina that is specialized for central vision and is critical for tasks like reading and driving.
Our physicians use the most advanced tools in the diagnosis and treatment of AMD and other diseases of the retina. We are also engaged in clinical trials that give you access to cutting-edge treatments. You or your doctor may contact us directly for an appointment with a retina specialist.
Innovative Research Advances Patient Care
Researchers at Harvard Ophthalmology/Mass. Eye and Ear are working to eradicate blinding retinal diseases—the leading cause of vision loss worldwide. Already, they have made major discoveries that have improved the diagnosis and treatment of many retinal diseases, including AMD, inherited retinal disorders, diabetic retinopathy, and ocular melanoma. We have:
- Developed proton beam therapy for eye tumors
- Co-discovered optical coherence tomography (OCT), the most widely used non-invasive imaging tool in retina
- Discovered photodynamic therapy (PDT) for the treatment of wet AMD
- Developed the first anti-VEGF therapy for wet AMD (Macugen™)
- Performed the basic-science work behind the most effective current treatment for wet AMD (Lucentis™)
Meet Our Team
Our physicians, led by Director Demetrios Vavvas, MD, PhD,and Associate Director Lucia Sobrin, MD, MPH,are experts in treating the full spectrum of diseases that affect the retina, macula, and vitreous.