In The Media

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Dr. Paul Dougherty

Teaching New Techniques

By Julia Shapiro, Westlake Magazine

See For Yourself Book by Dr. DoughertyDr. Paul Dougherty is among the world’s most experienced and respected vision correction surgeons. He attended UCLA Medical School where he graduated first in his class. Award-winning research and a residency at UCLA’s Jules Stein Eye Institute led to a fellowship at the prestigious Phillips Eye Institute in Minneapolis, where Dr. Dougherty trained with vision surgery pioneer Richard Lindstrom. M.D. Dr. Dougherty continues to serve as a principal investigator on numerous FDA clinical trials.

Entering UCLA Medical School, Dr. Paul Dougherty M.D. was drawn to ophthalmology because of its high rate of patient satisfaction and the ability for ophthalmologists to quickly and dramatically change peoples’ lives in a positive way. Suffering from nearsightedness and a life long wearer of glasses himself, Dr. Dougherty became the first ophthalmologist in the US to have LASIK on his own eyes. “It was one of the best decisions I have ever made for myself,” Dougherty says enthusiastically, and he wanted to bestow the same joy on others who suffered from similar eye conditions. Attracted to vision correction surgery from the start, he now specializes in LASIK, Cataract Surgery and Implantable Contact Lenses.

Dr. Dougherty began practicing in Ventura County in 1995 and has performed over 30,000 lens and laser-based vision correction surgeries in his career. In 1997, he founded his own practice, Dougherty Laser Vision, which has expanded to include three ophthalmologists (MD eye doctors) and two optometrists (OD eye doctors). In 2002, Dougherty took an even bigger step and expanded his practice to Santa Barbara and two years later, to Larchmont Village in Los Angeles. This summer Dr. Dougherty will be opening his new state of the art surgical center in Westlake Village.

Unlike most surgeons who focus on either LASIK or cataract surgery, Dr. Dougherty fuses the two technologies together, using both treatments to customize his procedure to ensure the best outcome for each unique vision correction. Additionally, Dr. Dougherty shares “I help develop the latest technologies. I am the teacher rather than the student when it comes to new technologies,” explains Dougherty. “I have taught thousands of surgeons my techniques and technologies at universities and conferences all over the world.” Many medical professionals (including other vision correction surgeons) have made Dr. Dougherty their choice when it comes to correcting their own vision. That explains why he is known as “The Doctors Doctor.”

Dr. Dougherty has been involved in the development of the Staar Vision ICL Implantable Contact Lens, which has recently started to replace LASIK for many patients who want ultra-high definition vision without the risk of dry eye and for patients who are not candidates for LASIK.

Paul Dougherty next to his equipmentDr. Dougherty recently published a book called “See For Yourself: The Eye- Opening Guide to Permanent Vision Correction” to educate the public about the procedures he performs. Two main themes in the book are that vision correction surgeries including LASIK are safer than contact lens wear, and that LASIK is not the only procedure out there to correct vision. Dr. Dougherty has routinely appeared in national and local news media including The Oprah Winfrey Show, The Doctors on CBS, ABC Nightline, CBS Early Show, TLC Ten Years Younger and he makes regular appearances on the Bob MacCormick Show on KFWB Talk 980.

One of Dr. Dougherty’s accomplishments for which he is most proud is his foundation that he started to provide better vision for those who cannot afford it. “I have a charitable organization named after my deceased son called the Andrew Dougherty Vision Foundation whose purpose is to gift vision patients in need both in the US and internationally,” said Dougherty. Dougherty and his team have traveled to the Middle East to perform cataract surgery on refugees and they have recently gone to Haiti to provide eye care and
cataract surgery to hundreds of citizens. “It was an extremely powerful and life-changing experience for my team and I” said Dougherty. Here in Southern California, his foundation provides cataract surgery and vision correction to many homeless citizens and wounded veterans. “I have received a tremendous amount of satisfaction over the years providing and improving vision for those whose vision is not clear.”


Dr. Dougherty personally performs all refractive surgery procedures in his practice. “I have learned that every moment that I am in the operating room, I must stay fully conscious and attentive to my patients because they have entrusted me with their sight. To most people, vision is the most important gift that they have received as a human.” He can relate to individuals with eye problems, and he treats every pair of eyes as if they were his own.

Techniques and technology of vision care are constantly changing and improving. Our community is fortunate to have one of the best eye surgeons in the world right here in The Conejo Valley. His extensive technical and medical background along with his passion for helping others enables him to provide the quality of service that he offers. It is no wonder that Dr. Dougherty is known as “The Doctor’s Doctor.”

If you would like to have clearer vision or a second opinion (Have you been advised that you are not a candidate for vision surgery?) if so Dr. Dougherty welcomes you to contact him for your personal complimentary examination.

If you are interested in the many innovations Dr. Dougherty has helped develop and the truths and myths
about eye surgery, you can find it in his book See For Yourself: The Eye-Opening Guide to Permanent Vision Correction.

“I evaluate each patient and make recommendations for treatment based on what I would do or what I would recommend if my family member was in their situation,” explains Dougherty.


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