ophth logo


An update from our dear resident, Heather Stiff -

"Hi all!

On September 5th, I had a double lumen port placed in my right chest and started my second cycle of inpatient chemotherapy. I was there for 4 nights and finished on September 9th. I came home that day and was very tired for the first 3-4 days. I also unfortunately had some bone pain from my neulasta shot (injection that increases your white blood cells). Luckily, it resolved after a couple days! I am starting to feel better now and have more energy. I get labs twice a week and have a follow-up appointment next week to make sure things are going as expected. Then, my next cycle of chemotherapy will be September 26th. Again, it will be a higher dose, which is good for killing the tumor but worse for side effects. After that cycle, I will hopefully be halfway through!! Overall I feel like things are going well and we are on the winning side :) Thank you all for your continued support, thoughts, and prayers. 



Alward as 2018 Goldmann Lecturer

Dr. Lee Alward presented the Goldmann Lecture at the 2018 Glaucoma Research Society meeting in Parma Italy on August 31st.

The Glaucoma Research Society is a small group of glaucoma clinicians and researchers. The Society meets every two years and the Goldmann Lecture is the only named lecture that the society has.

There are currently 86 active members in the world. Dr. Chris Johnson is an active member and Dr. Sohan Hayreh is an emeritus member. Dr. John Fingert presented at the meeting in Parma and is being considered for membership.

 alward lecturing


Photo by James D. Brandt, MD



Pediatrics Specialty Clinic (PSC)

The remaining portion of the renovated Pediatric Specialty Clinic (PSC) opened this week, including 22 new exam rooms, two treatment rooms, and a play area. For the first time, pediatric ophthalmology specialists will see patients in the PSC. 

PSC clinic8  PSC clinic4
PSC clinic2 PSC clinic3 
PSC clinic5 PSC clinic6 
PSC clinic7

PSC clinic 

Benji Delzell and Dimitra Triantafilou in the new Peds Specialty Clinic area. "Peds ophthalmology had our first week seeing patients this week and it went great."

You Make a Difference

YouMakeADifference icon

Congratulations to Resident, Brittni Scruggs, MD, PhD, on receiving the “Making a Difference Award”!

The Making a Difference program is designed to recognize individuals who have performed in an exemplary manner, consistent with the goals of service excellence, and with a commitment to quality care.

Brittni Scruggs

Wellness Corner

Submitted by Tonya Looker-

Wellness icon

Looking for the next wellness program? Check out Fit In Four. Tackle your health by improving your physical activity and fruit and vegetable intake for four weeks, October 1 – 28. Faculty, staff, and students are all invited to participate! Download the Weekly Tracking Sheet here. Register at My Health and Wellness!

fit in four tracker sheet


Healthiest State Initiative's 2018 Annual Walk

As a department, we are signed up for the Healthiest State Walk on October 3rd at 12:00 PM. 

iTeam Ophthalmology

We'll meet outside the Family Care entrance. We will make 2 laps around Kinnick Stadium and return at the PFP valet entrance.

View our team page: http://bit.ly/2MBMtfh

HSW 2018 Poster

Iowa Lions Eye Bank | Update

Submitted by Ashley Dockendorf-

Thank you to Iowa Almanac for helping ILEB celebrate our 63rd Anniversary!

Iowa Almanac for Thursday, September 13, 2018

"So That Others May See"

Back in the early 1950s, Ruth Fisher was having problems seeing clearly. An ophthalmologist at the University of Iowa concluded that her best hope was a corneal transplant. But there was a problem...a successful operation had to be conducted within 36 hours of receiving a donor cornea, and by law at the time, those had to come from outside the state.
It took weeks before a donor could be found in Buffalo, New York...and three more months before another donor was found so surgery could be done on her other eye.
Doctors saw a need for a new system, so during a speech to the 1954 state convention of Iowa Lions Clubs, Dr. Alson Braley of the University of Iowa convinced the Lions to expand their well-known sight conservation program. Those in attendance quickly agreed.
Lions from across Iowa contacted lawmakers and got state law amended to allow Iowans to will body parts to a medical school or eye bank. On September 13, 1955, the Iowa Lions Eye Bank was established with an office in the Department of Ophthalmology at the University of Iowa. The first staff member and executive director--Ruth Fisher, who served in the post until 1983.
From humble beginnings, the Iowa Lions Eye Bank has called a 14,000-square foot space at the UI Bioventures Center home since 2013. And thousands have been helped thanks to the Iowa Lions Eye Bank, which opened on this date in 1955.
Listen to the Full Edition: http://bit.ly/2OpuGcd

On Saturday, September 1st, several members of the Coralville Lions Club hauled grapes at Fireside Winery as a fundraiser for the Club! They hauled at least 1200 pounds of grapes and raised $500!

  ILEB 5

Recent issue of The Ophthalmologist

In case you missed it…

A great article in the most recent issue of The Ophthalmologist, showcasing Dr. Christine Sindt and the Iowa Lions Eye Bank.

"My patients aren’t eyeballs in a chair, they are people – and it’s always important to remember that. Because what they want to do – their goals in life – will determine what choices we make together. Oftentimes, there are several different routes we could take, but I can’t advise somebody unless I know what’s really important them. And that makes it a very personal journey."

Read full article: http://bit.ly/2MUrB6Z   

The ophthalmologist

IRL Birthday Potluck

The IRL team celebrated birthdays this week with an awesome potluck celebration!

IRL birthdays

Wellness Corner

Submitted by Tonya Looker-

Wellness icon

Healthiest State Initiative's 2018 Annual Walk

As a department, we are signed up for the Healthiest State Walk on October 3rd at 12:00 PM. 

iTeam Ophthalmology

We'll meet outside the Family Care entrance. We will make 2 laps around Kinnick Stadium and return at the PFP valet entrance.

View our team page: http://bit.ly/2MBMtfh

HSW 2018 Poster

September Well-Being Updates

September 2018 Wellness Update


Fruits & Veggies, More Matters

veggiesA recent report in the journal Neurology found that a diet containing approximately one serving of green leafy vegetables per day is associated with slower age-related cognitive decline.

- Things like spinach, kale, collards, and lettuce.

Nutritionists recommend at least 4 ½ cups of vegetables a day. But what's in a serving?

- 1 cup raw leafy veggies, ½ cup raw/cooked other veggies, ¾ cup vegetable juice.

Consider how many servings you get in a day. How can you work on increasing your intake of veggies? 

Source:  https://www.nia.nih.gov/news/leafy-greens-linked-slower-age-related-cognitive-decline

Reading Food Labels

nutrition labelReading labels can help you make good food choices. You can find labels on most products.

Things to look at:

- Product Dates
- Ingredients list
- Nutrition facts label

At the top, you will find the FDA definition of a serving of that food or drink and the number of servings in the container. The rest of the nutrition information on the label is for one serving.

Here's a tip: If a food has 5% of the Daily Value or less, it is low in that nutrient. If it has 20% or more, it is high in that nutrient. Low or high can be either good or bad -- it depends on whether you need more of a nutrient (like fiber), or less (like fat).

Source: https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/reading-food-labels

Iowa Lions Eye Bank | Update

Submitted by Ashley Dockendorf-

Be sure to check out the September donor story on the ILEB website:


Gift of sight

Congratulations to Christine Kondratick for celebrating her 15th Anniversary with the University of Iowa! Christine joined Iowa Lions Eye Bank as a Research Scientist, PhD in 2017, and prior to that conducted research on DNA replication and repair mechanisms in the Department of Biochemistry. Her research interests at ILEB are to examine the molecular changes that occur in corneal endothelial cells. We are proud to have her as part of our research team!

15 years

15 years cake

Eye cancer patients receive sock monkey “like me”

In case you missed it in Noon News...

Story written by Joe Schmidt-

The removal of an eye can be scary, especially for a child. UI Health Care doctors and staff recognized an opportunity to change the experience and ease the concerns of young patients and their families.

Team members from the Eye Clinic partnered with the UI Hospitals & Clinics Volunteer Services office to create a customized sock monkey doll for children who have an eye removed. The monkey features a winking eye to match the eye that the patient has removed (right or left). Hand-made monkeys also have different color remaining eyes and other features that add to the uniqueness of each.

The idea for personalized monkeys came from UI student volunteer Kenten Kingsbury and oculoplastic surgeon Dr. Audrey Ko. They realized that sock monkey dolls were being made by a hospital volunteer group known as the Merry Monkey Makers, so the two arranged through the Volunteer Services office to have monkeys specially designed for Eye Clinic patients.

“The idea of removing an eye is very difficult. It brings up questions about a child’s appearance after surgery and concerns about how the process might affect a child for the rest of their life, both medically and socially. My clinic volunteer, Kenten, came up with the amazing idea after seeing a couple families go through the heartbreaking decision to remove their child’s eye due to retinoblastoma or trauma. We thought customizing the monkeys to match the needs of our unique patients seemed like a simple way to make the whole process of having a prosthetic eye a little less scary,” states Ko.

More information at:



Sock monkey patient web

UI Health Care doctors and staff partnered with volunteers to create special sock monkeys to comfort young patients. 2-year old Ellie’s new friend (red hat) features a winking eye to match her eye removed due to eye cancer.

group monkeys web

A troop of customized monocular monkeys await their new owners and homes.

kenten ko logo web

Volunteer Kenten Kingsbury (left) and Audrey Ko, MD, show off a few of the customized sock monkeys created for patients.

lindsay and ellie web

Lindsay Pronk BCO, BADO, with UI Hospitals & Clinics Ocular Prosthetics Service checks in with Ellie. Pronk created the artificial eye for Ellie and helps her parents on the proper care.

Questions? Comments? Suggestions?

As a department, we encourage you to share any thoughts, concerns, ideas, or questions you may have.

Link to form: http://bit.ly/2yiwb4D 

Just a refresher, the qualtrics survey linked above is located on the menu bar of the Ophthalmology Update page. The Update link that is sent out each week stays the same and you can save this link to your bookmarks for quick access!

menu bar

If you have questions, comments, or suggestions for our admin team that you'd like to remain anonymous, please submit through this form. Your entry is anonymous unless you specifically type in your email address for a response. 

feedback survey

Orthoptics receives highest level of accreditation

AOC logo

Congratulations to the Orthoptics team on receiving the highest level of accreditation on its recent review from the American Orthoptic Council!

"Following review of your application, the Accreditation Committee has determined that your program be commended for substantial compliance."

Study shows AI can deliver specialty-level diagnosis in primary care setting

IDx provider using

Results of the study were published Aug. 28 online in Nature Digital Medicine, offering the first look at data that led to FDA clearance for IDx-DR, the first medical device that uses AI for the autonomous detection of diabetic retinopathy.

“The AI system’s primary role is to identify those people with diabetes who are likely to have diabetic retinopathy that requires further evaluation by an eye-care provider. The study results demonstrate the safety of autonomous AI systems to bring specialty-level diagnostics to a primary care setting, with the potential to increase access and lower cost,” says Michael Abràmoff, MD, PhD, the Robert C. Watzke Professor of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences with UI Health Care and principal investigator on the study. He is founder and president of IDx, the company that created the IDx-DR system and funded the study.

Read full article: http://bit.ly/2PJ0ZUt 

Ophthalmology Town Hall Meeting Recap

View Town Hall recording:

National Ranking

US News and World Report 2018-2019 Best Hospital Rankings

UIHC - #1 in State

UI Department of Ophthalmology listed as #7 in Best Hospitals for Ophthalmology

Nationally Ranked Adult Care Badge bnr 320x220

New Employees

If you haven’t done so already, please stop by the C.S. O’Brien Library (LL next to Elevator K)
to have your photo taken.

Jaclyn Haugsdal
Clinical Assistant Professor

Jane Bailey
Clinical Assistant Professor

Erin Boese
Clinical Assistant Professor

Stacy Moore
Clin Tech III

Heather Oetzel
Clin Tech III

Rashmi Mallik
Clinical/Tech Specialist

Megan Krapfl
Clinic Coordinator

Nicole Radunzel
Ophthalmic Photographer I

Meghan Freme
Optician I

Amber Gent
Optician I

Christine Kondratick
Asst Research Scientist

Michael Delcau
Research Assistant

Joanna Williams
Admin Services Coordinator

Jesi Cole
Admin Services Coordinator

Caroline Allen

Vanessa Hull

Karie Thornburg

Jessica Naughton
Assistant Director of Development for Ophthalmology

Years of Service

40 years

Connie Hinz
Chris Sinkey

30 years

Keith Carter
Mary Klinefelter
Karen Hurt
Marsha Hurt

25 Years

Tammy Boehme

20 years

Deb Schuett
Kelly Baker

15 years

Kim Katalinich
Michele Prottsman
Kitty Jones
Dalyz Ochoa
Vikki Bell

10 years

Megan Riker
Arlene Drack

5 years

Luke Wiley
Poppy Datta
Laken Pins
Jill Wiley
Grefachew Workalemahu
Matthew Harper
Amanda Black

Awards and Recognition

You Make a Difference Award

Mary Klinefelter
Vera Howe
Christine Sindt
Jane Bailey
Clinic Receptionists
UI Optical


American Glaucoma Society – Clinician Scientist Award 2018
Dr. Nathaniel Sears


President of Iowa Academy of Ophthalmology
Dr. Erin Shriver


KidSight screened 500,000th child in March


IDx-DR - FDA's first ever clearance of an autonomous AI diagnostic system used for screening of diabetic retinopathy

Professor Status

Four faculty members were honored for attaining professor status

Arlene Drack, MD (first woman in history of the department to be promoted to full tenured professor)

Markus Kuehn, PhD

Scott Larson, MD

Terry Braun, PhD


Faculty ads for Cornea, Retina, Neuro-Ophthalmology, Comprehensive and Optometry/Contact Lens, Glaucoma (always have an ad out)

Interviews currently for Cornea and Contact Lens

New Faculty:

- Jaclyn Haugsdahl - Comprehensive
- Erin Boese - Glaucoma
- Jane Bailey – Neuro-Ophthalmology and Comprehensive
- Elaine Binkley – Retina (here in February)
- Sarah Downes – Pediatric Optometry

Current Clinical Positions:

- Clerk III
- Clerk Typist III
- Clin Tech (2)
- Photography
- Research Assistant (2)
- Research Associate

Year End Numbers

PB FY18 (College of Medicine Side)

- Increase of 1.9% RVUs from FY17 to hit 170,515
- Net Patient Revenues increase of 1.46%
- Collection Rate 31.27%, decrease from 33.25% in FY17
- Positive Net Income
- HB FY18 (Hospital Side)
- Clinic:
--> 2.9% increase over last year to hit 66,801 visits
- Minor Room:
--> 8% increase from FY17 to hit 11,668 Procedures
- Clinic Specialties: (Orthoptics, Perimetry, ERG, Photography, Echography, Pupilography)
--> Provided over 32,444 procedures/tests (units of service)

3 yr clinic visit trend


*click to enlarge 

minor rm 3 yr procedure trend

*click to enlarge

Patient Satisfaction

patient satisfaction chart

*Click to enlarge


Click here to view images

Front Reception
- Phase I opened yesterday (8/21/18)
- Phase II – 5 to 6 weeks

Resident Room – renovated in honor of the late Dick Claussen 66’ BA, 70’ CCOM and 75’ Resident (practiced in Dubuque)

Faculty Offices – Dr. Griess, Dr. Kardon, and Dr. Alward offices renovated to 2 person; continue to renovate as we have the time and funds

“Rumor Has It”

- Sick Leave
- Paging/VOALTE and VOALTEme
- Sept Paycheck – Deposited on 9/4/18
- AAO – Reception Information

Binkley inducted into sports hall of fame

Binkley ElaineCongratulations to Dr. Elaine Binkley on being inducted into her undergrad’s sports hall of fame!

Excerpt from article-

“Elaine Binkley was a four-year letter winner and two-time All-American in cross country and track & field.

Binkley's career as a scholar-athlete at Denison is nearly unparalleled. She was the co-valedictorian of the Denison Class of 2017 and was not only a recipient of Denison President's Medal but an NCAA Postgraduate Scholar and a Rhodes Scholar finalist."

Read full article: http://bit.ly/2NBZNAA 

Wellness Corner

Submitted by Tonya Looker-

Wellness icon

Healthiest State Initiative's 2018 Annual Walk

As a department, we are signed up for the Healthiest State Walk on October 3rd at 12:00 PM. 

iTeam Ophthalmology

We'll meet outside the Family Care entrance. We will make 2 laps around Kinnick Stadium and return at the PFP valet entrance.

View our team page: http://bit.ly/2MBMtfh 

HSW 2018 Poster

Iowa Lions Eye Bank | Update

Submitted by Ashley Dockendorf-

Thank you to everyone who came out to the Donor Dash this past Saturday! We talked to lots of donor families, recipients, and supporters at this great event. We also want to congratulate Hadley Freiburger, daughter of Monica Freiburger, ILEB Donor Eligibility Manager, for winning the Tot Trot!


ILEB booth at this year's Donor Dash!

ILEB Shannon, Deb (Course Marshall Volunteer), Ellie

Shannon, Deb, and Ellie

Hadley takes the lead

Hadley Freiburger winning the Tot Trot

Blue & Green Mother & Daughter

Hadley and Monica Freiburger 

Remodel - Phase I

We’re excited to unveil our new Front Desk reception area! The new layout will reduce check-in wait times and streamline the experience for our patients.

Phase I - opened 8/22/18

Phase II - 5 to 6 weeks

 remodel 1 remodel 2 
 remodel 3 remodel 4 
remodel 5  remodel 6 
 remodel 7 remodel 8 
 remodel 9 remodel 10 
 remodel 11 remodel 12 
 remodel 14 remodel 13 
 remodel 15 remodel 16 

Welcome, Drs. Bailey and Boese

We'd like to welcome our newest faculty, Drs. Jane Bailey and Erin Boese to the Iowa Eye ophthalmology team! You may recognize both due to their history with the department and we are proud to have them on board.

Jane A. Bailey, MD
Clinical Assistant Professor

Neuro-Ophthalmology Clinic

Jane Bailey

- Fellowship, Neuro-Ophthalmology, University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA
- Active Duty in USAF: 1996-2000 (rank of Major; staff ophthalmologist 1996-1998; Chief of Ophthalmology 1998-2000)
- Residency, Ophthalmology, University of Iowa (1996; received the PJ Leinfelder Outstanding Resident Award 1995)
- MD, University of Minnesota
- BA, University of Notre Dame

Erin Boese, MD
Clinical Assistant Professor

Glaucoma Clinic

Boese Erin 2018

- Fellowship, Glaucoma, University of Michigan, Kellogg Eye Institute, Ann Arbor, Mich.
- Residency, Ophthalmology, Casey Eye Institute, Oregon Health & Science University, Portland, Ore.
- MD, University of Iowa, Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine, Iowa City, Iowa
- BA, Biology, Carleton College, Northfield, Minn.


About The Update

The Ophthalmology Update is a newsletter for employees of the Department of Ophthalmology. Editor & staff writer: Kelsey Hunold (7-8001) This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; staff writers: Trish Duffel This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Joe Schmidt This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; copy editor: Peg Harris; Department Head: Keith D. Carter, MD.