Dr Dan Steps Up To Academic Front Line
The medical director and founder of the London Vision Clinic is known by many names. Some friends and colleagues – including fellow surgeon Glenn Carp – call him “The Prof”; while to most patients (and in this Blog) he is referred to by the friendly tag “Dr Dan”.
However, among his peers and in serious academic circles, his full title might be used: Professor Dan Z Reinstein followed by many letters (MD MA (Cantab) FRCSC FRCOphth DABO) indicating an impressive array of postgraduate qualifications.
In a nutshell, Dr Dan is not only a uniquely experienced and pioneering LASIK surgeon, but also one of the few ophthalmic surgeons in the UK who has dedicated himself solely to Laser Eye Surgery for more than a decade.
Recently he returned to the academic front line to lecture at the prestigious Columbia University in New York where he has received a professorship – he had previously also held this title at Cornell University. “Columbia offers one of the top ophthalmology review courses in the world”, he told me. “The one month course is attended by people from all over the world – Brazil, Portugal, Japan, China the US etc. – and I was invited to teach the refractive surgery component. “
Dr Dan explained why he had been asked to take part, despite the fact that “one of the fathers of refractive surgery” – Dr Stephen Trokel – is also a professor at Columbia University. “Being based in the US, Dr Trokel does not have access to the latest technology that we have here in the London Vision Clinic because of the years (and expense) that it takes to get through the FDA approval process”, said Dr Dan explaining that in this speciality, the UK is considerably more advanced than America.
Despite his day to day treatment of patients, Dr Dan is no stranger to the academic world. “In fact – due to the huge amount of research work carried out here at the London Vision Clinic – I am more academic than most academic surgeons!”
In terms of the amount of work published in peer reviewed medical journals, the London Vision Clinic is in a unique position in the UK and can stand alongside only a very few other private clinics globally. Remarkably, even taking into consideration published papers presented by all the dedicated academic institutions around the world, the London Vision Clinic is near the top of the list.
Tim Archer, who heads the research team, explains that the clinic is responsible for publishing on average one paper a month. “Even standing beside entire university departments, we are within the top ten laser research centres in the world, with a research team of three people”, he said. And Dr Dan and his team were second only, to a much larger chain of Spanish clinics based in Alicante, in the number of first author publications. “Obviously we do a tremendous amount of research work here at the London Vision Clinic”, said Dr Dan. “Although the public and our patients are not really aware of it, we are also proud of having built up an excellent reputation among our peers around the world. “For a private clinic of our size, these are remarkable figures. We are – man per paper – the most efficient researchers in the world of ophthalmology” he added.