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September 2016 Issue

The Successful DMEK Transition

It’s about time we got some real answers about DMEK: Is the challenge worth the time and learning curve?

Experienced DMEK surgeons, like board-certified ophthalmologist Dr. Neda Shamie, have asked themselves the same question.


So join us on Thursday, September 8, 2016, at 6:00PM PDT/9:00PM EDT, as Dr. Shamie arms you with the specifics on performing the procedure from start to finish. 


This FREE webinar, based on Dr. Shamie’s own experiences, will provide you with an exploration of "a graft that behaves like no other graft" and you will gain her first-hand knowledge including:

  • Detailed explanations paired with video clips of her own DMEK procedures
  • Insight into what obstacles you can expect during DMEK
  • In-depth solutions for how to best circumvent those challenges

Instructor Bio:

Prior to her tenure with Advanced Vision Care, Dr. Neda Shamie served as the Associate Professor at USC Eye Institute and as Medical Director for their Center in Beverly Hills.  Having transitioned to DMEK nearly 7 years ago while still at Oregon and an associate at Devers Eye Institute with Dr. Mark Terry, Dr. Shamie has gained firsthand experience in the successful transition from DSEK to DMEK.  Dr. Shamie has also been published in peer reviewed journals and written chapters in educational reference books on her experiences with procedures like DMEK. 

Click here to read more about Dr. Shamie’s take on DMEK.


Learn More About SightLife, Our Services, and Our EndoSaver in Copenhagen

Join SightLife at the EuCornea annual conference, September 9th & 10th in Copenhagen.

Please visit us at our booth #EUC04 to learn more about our quality corneal tissue and services as well as the EndoSaver, our corneal endothelium delivery instrument.

To learn more about Eucornea or to register, visit now.


Join SightLife at AAO this Fall

Visit the SightLife booth #2566 at the American Academy of Ophthalmology’s (AAO) annual meeting, October 15th - 18th in Chicago.

Our live surgical demonstrations will offer you inside access to leading experts.  As an attendee of the annual AAO meeting in Chicago from October 15-18, SightLife is inviting you to attend our FREE live surgical demonstrations by some of our surgeon partners.  Our educational events will offer you inside knowledge from industry leading experts as they answer the hard questions and arm you with new insights and techniques.



Insight to DMEK Surgical Techniques

Saturday, October 15

11:00 AM - 12:00 PM -         Charles Lin, MD     (Zeiss booth #3826)
2:00 PM - 3:00 PM -             Nicole Fram, MD   (SightLife booth #2566)

Sunday, October 16

11:00 AM - 12:00 PM -         Brandon Ayres, MD           (Zeiss booth #3826)
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM -           Deepinder Dhaliwal, MD   (SightLife booth #2566)
3:00 PM - 4:00 PM -             Neda Shamie, MD            (SightLife booth #2566)



EndoSerter® Demonstrations Using Ultra-thin Tissue

Saturday, October 15

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM -         Matt Geigengack, MD      (SightLife booth #2566)

Sunday, October 16

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM -         Keith Walter, MD              (SightLife booth #2566)



To reserve your spot at one or more of our events at AAO in Chicago, 


Or visit us at
Our program is not affiliated with the official program of AAO.


Innovations in Corneal Surgery & Therapeutics

Join us on Friday, October 14th from 5:30pm-7:30pm at the Millennium Knickerbocker Hotel for an exciting informational session and panel discussion. 

Ophthalmology industry leaders including William Link, PhD and Richard Lindstrom, MD will share how SightLife is transforming to lead innovation in corneal surgery and therapeutics to eliminate treatable corneal blindness by 2040.  



Hospitals Refusing to Allow Surgeons to Perform Corneal Transplantation Surgeries

SightLife has been made aware of hospitals in California that have refused to allow surgeons to continue to perform corneal transplants in their facilities due to a lack of adequate reimbursement.  Have you had a similar experience?  If so, let SightLife know.  We are actively working to fix these payment issues and ensure patients have access to the care they need. 


If you experienced a facility that has refused to allow corneal transplantation procedures, please email Rusty Kelly, Chief Marketing Officer directly at


SightLife’s Josie Noah Recognized for Her Global Work

The Washington Global Health Alliance (WGHA) acknowledges the state’s global health professionals by recognizing annual “Pioneers,” creative and inspirational leaders who are the first to explore new territory…and ultimately make the world healthier.

SightLife is proud to announce that WGHA selected Josie Noah, SightLife Director of Global Surgeon Training and Patient Care Program, as this year’s Rising Leader; a young, innovative professional dedicated to solving global health inequity while partnering with other individuals and organizations.  Under her leadership, SightLife’s surgeon training program in India has become the most recognized and successful corneal training program in the world, training nearly 20 percent of the country’s corneal surgeons and reducing the cost of surgical training by 60 percent.

According to the WGHA judges, a panel of global health experts, it was not only Josie’s success in creating the program, but also her unwavering commitment to mentorship and leading by example—voluntarily working with colleagues to maximize their strengths—that exemplified her understanding of what it means to be an inspiring leader.


SightLife’s Global Impact Through One Woman’s Eyes

Chand Bee is a working mother who lives a few hours outside the city of Hyderabad in southern India. She and her husband both work in the cotton and rice paddy fields as laborers to support their family; two teenage daughters and an eight-year-old son.

In 2010, Chand Bee noticed the vision in her left eye was starting to deteriorate and, by 2014, she was completely corneal blind in that eye. The pain she experienced each day made it impossible for her to continue to work and the family’s income decreased by half, forcing Chand Bee and her husband to send their children to live in a hostel. 

Chand Bee found herself unemployed, living in excruciating pain and separated from her children, all because of corneal blindness.  Thankfully, she found hope at the LV Prasad Eye Hospital in Hyderabad, one of SightLife’s partners in India. American surgeons working with SightLife’s Global Sight Restoration Program traveled to LV Prasad to train local surgeons on the latest corneal transplant techniques that have better outcomes for patients, and Chand Bee was able to participate in the surgeon training program as a patient. SightLife also partnered with the eye bank at LV Prasad to ensure that more corneas are available for transplant locally.

Chand Bee had her corneal transplant in December 2014, with a teaching surgeon guiding her local surgeon. When they removed her bandage the next day, Chand Bee had a reason to smile again. With her hands folded together in a gesture of thanks, she realized her life had been restored far beyond her sight alone; she could now go back to work and earn enough to reunite her family. 

Today, the gift of sight is allowing Chand Bee to raise her family together under one roof; just the way she wants it.


Paying it Forward with DSEK

Sam Garg, MD, Vice chair of Clinical Ophthalmology, The Gavin Herbert Eye Institute at UC Irvine and Associate Medical Director for SightLife has visited his relatives in India a dozen times, but his most recent trip had a very different purpose: to pay it forward with his knowledge of Descemet’s Stripping Endothelial Keratoplasty (DSEK).  In June, Dr. Garg and Michael Banitt, MD, of University of Washington traveled to Kolkata, India, to serve as visiting faculty for a 4-day surgeon training course in DSEK. They taught alongside Drs. Samar Basak and Ayan Mohanta at the Disha Eye Hospital.

We worked with 10 Indian surgeons who had not done much DSEK or had tried it and not stuck with it, said Dr. Garg. The point was to re-familiarize the surgeons with DSEK and we covered patient selection, surgical technique, post-operative management and complication management.

The SightLife course began with didactics, case discussion and wet lab time with educational tissue that allowed the trainees to practice tissue preparation and insertion for the DSEK procedure. Most of the remainder of the intensive course was spent in the operating room, performing sight-restoring surgery on 17 Indian patients who received free care and housing at the eye hospital.  At the end of each day of hands-on learning, the trainees and faculty reviewed and discussed video of every surgery.

It’s one thing to learn from your own experiences, but you also learn a lot from watching other people and discussing, said Dr. Garg. All of the patients were seen by all of the doctors pre- and post-operatively, so there was opportunity to learn there as well. You can learn a lot of the intricacies of DSEK over 17 cases.

Dr. Garg enjoyed the experience and was very impressed with both the quality of the facility and the dedication of the participating surgeons.

These doctors are really invested in learning the DSEK technique and embracing it. The purpose of this course was not only to restore sight to the 17 patients, but really to give those surgeons the tools to be able to do this on their own going forward. We paid it forward with them and they can now feel confident in their own practices to do this very innovative surgery.

SightLife’s surgeon training program exists to increase the quality and quantity of corneal transplants by building surgeon capacity.  If you are interested in becoming involved in our surgeon training programs,



Or visit our website to learn more about our surgeon training program and to apply at