Retina Center

At the Eye Institute of West Florida, we treat even the most complex retina-vitreous disorders in a safe, caring and personal environment. Our specialists are world-renowned experts at diagnosing eye diseases and offering the latest treatment options. There are numerous diseases that can affect the retina and vitreous which require the care of a specialist.


At The Eye Institute you will always receive the personal attention of an expert in the field. Dr. Kirsch and Dr. Hairston are Florida-licensed, board-certified ophthalmologists with advanced medical training, called a Fellowship, in the subspecialty of retina and vitreous care. Their credentialing and years of experience as specialists assure our patients the highest level of care and comfort while being treated in a very special environment.

RetinaSome conditions commonly treated by our retina specialists include: age-related macular degeneration, cystoid macular edema, flashes and floaters, diabetic retinopathy, macular holes, retinal tears, retinal detachment, retinitis pigmentosa or other inherited retinal diseases, strokes of the retinal vein, wrinkled retina and cancers of the eye. Our retina specialists may also treat a patient who has experienced severe eye trauma, severe inflammation of the eye or complications from other eye surgery.


Because our physicians are directly involved in many clinical studies sanctioned by the FDA, our patients receive the latest medications and newer technologies before they are made available to the general public.  EYLEA™ was approved by the FDA for the treatment of wet age-related macular degeneration in November, 2011.  Our retina specialists were among the first physicians in the United States to receive this advanced medication for the treatment of macular degeneration.  Click here to learn more.

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Leonard S Kirsch, MD, FRCS(C)Leonard S Kirsch, MD, FRCS(C) is a fellowship-trained vitreous and retina specialist. He is internationally known for the numerous papers and lectures he has presented here and abroad. Dr. Kirsch is currently an active participant in ongoing research to find new treatments for diseases of the retina. His expertise in the most advanced diagnostic and treatment techniques of all diseases of the retina, macula and vitreous make Dr. Kirsch one of the elite in his field. In the Tampa Bay area, Dr. Kirsch pioneered the use of Photodynamic Therapy with Visudyne©, and intravitreal Macugen©, Lucentis©, and Avastin© for the treatment of age-related macula degeneration. Dr. Kirsch was also among the first surgeons in Florida to perform 25 gauge “no-stitch” vitrectomy in 2001. He is certified by the American Board of Ophthalmology and is a fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons of Canada.

Richard J Hairston, MD, FACSRichard J Hairston, MD, FACS, is a vitreous and retina specialist. He joined The Eye Institute in June, 2001 coming to us from a busy retina practice in Washington, DC. Dr. Hairston graduated from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and did his residency at the Wilmer Ophthalmological Institute at Johns Hopkins University. He completed a fellowship in diseases and surgery of the retina and vitreous at The Center for Retina Vitreous Surgery, Memphis, Tennessee. He then served as Assistant Chief of Service in Ophthalmology and Director of the Ocular Trauma Service at Johns Hopkins Hospital. Most recently he was Assistant Professor of Ophthalmology at Johns Hopkins University. He is certified by the American Board of Ophthalmology. Dr. Hairston enjoys an international reputation as an outstanding retina and vitreous surgeon.