Dr. Samir A. Shah
Dr. Samir A. Shah, MD
Address: 18582 Main Street, Huntington Beach, CA 92648
Dr. Samir A. Shah, MD, MS serves in the Orange County, California area as an ophthalmologist. He performs a variety of surgeries for people who have poor vision and eye disorders. His specialties include performing advanced cataract surgery, laser vision surgery, corneal transplants and pterygium excision. He currently is the main ophthalmologist in his team at Beach Eye Medical Group in Huntington Beach, CA.
Q: What body of work that you’ve done in the field of ophthalmology would you say you’re most proud of?
Dr. Shah: I have done so much work related to this field, both hands on work such as the surgeries and the written contributions, having taken part in scientific researches and publications that I am so proud to have authored and contributed to in the name of eye health. But the most proud I am as a surgeon is that every patient on whom I operate leaves my office with a restored eyesight, or in the case of cataract surgery, a restored eye. Our eyes guide us through life and it is very gratifying to help those whose eyes are in critical condition back to health.
Q: What are your certifications and what is your educational background like?
Dr. Shah: Well, firstly, I am a board-certified ophthalmologist. I have obtained several noteworthy academic honors throughout my studies too. For example, I graduated from the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Albany, NY as a valedictorian. I then went on to obtain a medical degree from the University of Michigan Medical School in Ann Arbor. There, I was selected by my peers as the president of the Medical Student Body. I was licensed to practice medicine at the eminent Jules Stein Eye Institute at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). After that, I went on to train in specific eye surgeries such as Cornea, External Disease, and Refractive Surgery at the Wilmer Eye Institute at the world-renowned Johns Hopkins Hospital. This was part of a highly competitive fellowship I was chosen to complete.
Q: What kind of praise have you gained during your tenor as an ophthalmological surgeon?
Dr. Shah: I was named by the Consumer’s Research Council, a research organization which rates the finest professional services to educate American consumers, as being among “America’s Top Ophthalmologists.” I have repeatedly been honored with this title. I have also received recognition for my work by the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin.
Q: What sets your practice apart from other Ophthalmologic Centers?
Dr. Shah: Beach Eye Medical Group is the exclusive provider of the C.L.E.A.R. Upgrade in Southern California. The C.L.E.A.R. Upgrade is an abbreviation for the Custom Lens Exchange and Astigmatism Revision, a set of procedures and testing used before, during, and after your cataract surgery. Not every practice promises to grant patients a life post-cataract surgery without the need for glasses or contacts. But at Beach Eye, thanks to our advanced technologies and surgical techniques, we are able to provide lens implants during your cataract surgery to improve your vision beyond belief. Patients who undergo the surgery and are either nearsighted or farsighted can usually have corrective errors fixed with the implantation of a standard “monofocal” lens implant.
Q: You perform custom cataract surgeries, what causes cataracts?
Dr. Shah: The eyes’ lenses change as we age and this change is partly attributed to cataract formation. A cataract builds up from proteins inside the eye. Normally, the proteins exist to keep the eye clear for light to easily pass though. The proteins can clump together over the years and form a clouded area on the lens, which focus light onto the retina to focus on particular focal point. The cloud that forms is the cataract. The cataract is problematic as it can grow and hover more of the lens, making it more difficult to see. Besides an old age, cataracts can be caused by: Ultraviolet radiation such as the sun, diabetes, hypertension, obesity, smoking, eye injury, family history, high nearsightedness, high usage of corticosteroid medications, an eye surgery, hormone replacement therapy, eye inflammation and alcoholism.
Q: One of your specialized surgeries is pterygium excision. What is hat and do I need it?
Dr. Shah: You will need a Pterygium Excision if you have a pterygium, but even so, you may not need it excised. A pterygium is fleshy tissue growing over the cornea. It is shaped as a triangle. When small, it is predominantly harmless. But it may grow large enough to interfere with vision, in which case, surgery is necessary to expel it. If these growths do not mar your eyesight and just create inflammation, you may relieve your eyes by taking a special ointment or eyedrops. Pterygium growths are noted as being caused by dry eyes, wind, dust and UV exposure. A pterygium may return even if successfully removed with surgery. Another excision may be performed if the inflammation/irritation worsens, or your eyesight does.
Q: Besides specialized surgeries, what other issues can people see you for?
Dr. Shah: I help patients of various eye problems with maintaining their conditions and providing options to better it. At Beach Eye Medical Center, I have seen patients for age related Macular Degeneration, allergies, Amblyopia (Lazy Eye), astigmatism, Bell’s Palsy, Blepharitis, blocked tear ducts, Chalazion and Stye, conjunctivitis (Pink Eye), corneal conditions, detached and torn retina, diabetes exam, dry eye, droopy eyelids, floaters and flashers, glaucoma care, hyphema, Keratoconus, laser vision, Latisse, migraines, ocular hypertension, optic neuritis, Presbyopia, pterygium and pinguecula, ptosis, refractive errors, strabismus and Subconjunctival Hemorrhage. Besides this litany of eye problems, you can always come to Beach Eye for a standard eye exam and eye consultation.
Q: Laser correction of poor eyesight is popular, but how do I know if I am right for it?
Dr. Shah: I am proud to provide LASIK for patients who wear glasses or contact lenses and would like to be free of them. Bu LASIK is not for everyone. First, it’s important to understands what the surgery does. LASIK is a refractive surgery that can treat moderate cases of nearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism and presbyopia. But patients with severe cases of these ailments do are not eligible for LASIK. During the procedure, I create a flap in the cornea and use a laser to reshape the cornea so that focusing problems can be treated. This will not correct the vision of those with large pupils, thin corneas, high myopia or keratoconus. If you have moderate vision issues without the exceptions mentioned, you should be a good candidate, but if you are not sure, ask your ophthalmologist. Beach Eye would be happy to determine whether you will benefit from LASIK or not.
Q: What is the recovery process like for LASIK surgery patients?
Dr. Shah: LASIK recovery is a relatively quick process. In most cases, the patient is able to return to work or their usual activities the day following the surgery. You will receive goggles which must be kept on your eyes until the morning after the surgery. In the day after LASIK, the patient may experience side effects, but they should subside as the eye recovers. Side effects include red eye, scratchy eye, eyes sensitive to the light and blurriness. In the case of blurry eyes, you will be provided with artificial tears that have no preservatives to keep your eyes hydrated, as dryness is another occurrence you will notice post-surgery. You should avoid wearing makeup for a week after the surgery as well as taking part in strenuous activities and sports. They should be avoided for two weeks. Take care of your eyes by wearing safety glasses. Watch out for foreign objects, nothing should come in contact with your eyes. You should avoid rubbing or touching your eyes.
Q: How are you involved in the ophthalmologic community?
Dr. Shah: I have published book chapters and peer-reviewed journal articles on the topics of my clinical expertise, which includes advanced cataract surgery, laser correction, the latest forms of corneal transplantation, and pterygium excision. I have been involved in training of future ophthalmologists in the United States as well as abroad. I have performed charitable surgeries internationally at the Aravind Eye Hospital in South India. This area is one of the most rural and improvised places in India. I am a member of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, the American Society for Cataract and Refractive Surgery, the Cornea Society, and the California Academy of Eye Physicians and Surgeons.