Clinical Research on Eye Conditions

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Cutting-Edge Research in Vision Care

Virginia Eye Consultants participates in cutting edge clinical research in ophthalmology, giving patients the opportunity to take advantage of exciting new landmark treatments, medical devices, procedures and medications not yet available to the public.

Why is research important?

Clinical research paves the way for next-generation discoveries that improve patient care, convenience and comfort.

“Conducting research allows us to bring the best possible combination of new, traditional, homeopathic, surgical and investigational treatments to our patients,” says John Sheppard, M.D., a surgeon at Virginia Eye Consultants. “We are also raising the level of understanding of virtually all forms of eye disease for our community and for our physician colleagues in the U.S. and around the world.”

Physician Leaders in their Field

VEC’s attention to research sets the vision care center apart from many other physician practices in the region and the state. It creates an environment of learning, continually updates the physicians’ knowledge of vision care advances and encourages them to be the best in their field. Since many studies are done on an international level, VEC collaborates with leading-edge ophthalmologists around the world.

VEC physicians also serve on the scientific advisory boards for most of the major ophthalmic pharmaceutical companies and continually lecture on medical topics throughout the U.S. and countries ranging from China, Mexico and the Czech Republic to Europe, Israel, the Middle East and Canada.

To date, VEC has participated in over 75 clinical trials involving new research in all aspects of ophthalmology – 12 of the trials were introduced, designed and led by a VEC team, which published the results. VEC is also a multi-center international trial recruitment leader for studies in corneal ulcer, high risk corneal transplant, dry eye, ocular allergy, posterior non-infectious uveitis and anterior acute uveitis.

Here are some of the many areas in ophthalmology in which VEC has done research:

Corneal Diseases and Corneal Transplants

  • Corneal ulcer
  • High risk corneal transplant
  • Corneal transplantation immunology
  • New drops to prevent rejection in corneal transplants
  • New cyclosporine implants to prevent rejection in corneal transplants
  • New corneal transplant techniques and methods

Dry eye        

  • New genetically engineered biotech medication for dry eye (first in its class)
  • New secretagogues for dry eye
  • New drops for dry eye
  • Nutritional therapy for dry eye


  • Posterior non-infectious uveitis
  • Anterior acute uveitis
  • New pills for uveitis
  • New injections for uveitis


  • Glaucoma medications
  • Glaucoma surgery

New intraocular lens material research:


  • Blepharitis treatment
  • New drops for blepharitis

Macular Degeneration

  • New injections for macular degeneration
  • Nutritional therapy for macular degeneration

Ocular surface disease

Ocular allergy

The doctors at Virginia Eye Consultants have either authored or reviewed the content on this site.

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