Rick D. Isernhagen, MD


Rick Isernhagen, MD


Undergraduate BS: University of Oklahoma, with distinction

Medical School MD: University of Oklahoma College of Medicine, with special distinction

Residency: Dean A. McGee Eye Institute, University of Oklahoma College of Medicine

Chief Residency: Dean McGee Eye Institute, University of Oklahoma College of Medicine

Fellowship: Surgery Retina and Vitreous, Wilmer Ophthalmological Institute, Johns Hopkins University and Hospital, Baltimore, MD

Honors: "Best Doctors in America" 2003 to present "America's Top Ophthalmologists" 2007 to present Commendation, Commonwealth of Kentucky-Department for the Blind 1991 Junior Achievement Award, American Academy of Ophthalmology 2002

Alpha Omega Alpha Honorary Medical Society


Professional Service:

-President, Lexington Academy of Eye Physicians and Surgeons 1996-1998
-Practicing Ophthalmologist Advisory Committee on Education (POACE) Retina Section Subcommittee Chairman, American Academy of Ophthalmology 1995-2002
-Practice Parameters Committee, Diabetic Retinopathy Subcommittee Chairman, Kentucky Health Policy Board 1995-1996
-Advisory Board, Ophthalmology Center of Excellence, Chairman 1994-1995
-Board of Directors Eye Care Providers of Kentucky, Secretary 1993-1998
-Chief, Section of Ophthalmology Humana Hospital, Jewish Hospital, Saint Joseph East Hospital 1990-1999


Links and Information on Rick D. Isernhagen, MD

Dr. Isernhagen - "Subspecialty" 
Dr. Isernhagen - "Educational Background Isernhagen" 
Dr. Isernhagen - "Ocular Histoplasmosis" 
Dr. Isernhagen - "Led You to Choose"


What led you to choose Retina Associates?

When I visited in 1987, I immediately fell in love with the people and the beauty of Kentucky. I found a tremendous opportunity to join a very strong leader in vitreoretinal diseases and surgery, my partner, William Wood, MD. Our practice has grown. I continue to be fortunate in working beside seven other gifted and caring physicians.

Why did you choose your subspecialty?

I chose ophthalmology as a specialty and retina as a subspecialty because of the importance of the gift of vision to patients and the ability to restore it and see such an impact on the patient's life.

What are your interests?

Retinal tears, retinal detachment, trauma, diabetic retinopathy, age-related macular degeneration (AMD), macular holes, macular epiretinal membranes, retinal vein occlusion, myopic degeneration, and ocular histoplasmosis.

What research are you currently working on?

My research has primarily focused on age-related macular degeneration (AMD). I have served as a principle investigator on national and international studies on nonexudative and exudative AMD. This included the Age Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS) 2, investigating new vitamin and nutritional therapies for the prevention of severe vision loss in AMD. This study updated the current vitamin recommendations for high risk AMD patients. Also included is the ForseeHome Study which evaluated a home vision monitoring device in patients who are at high risk for losing vision from AMD. This device can detect very early vision changes in patients with exudative AMD when they are more effectively treated. I am currently a principle investigator in two studies evaluating medical therapies that may limit the progression of geographic atrophy and resultant vision loss in patients with nonexudative AMD.

In our office, all eight physicians are active together in clinical research studies. Along with them, I serve as an investigator in other studies on AMD, diabetic retinopathy, and ocular histoplasmosis. One of these important studies is the Diabetic Retinopathy Clinical Research (DRCR) network of which I am a clinical investigator. This group of investigators has completed and

reported on many important therapies for diabetic retinopathy and continues with many ongoing trials evaluating new treatments for diabetic retinopathy.

What do you enjoy outside of medicine?

I enjoy time with my family, playing bridge, golf, building and flying remote control model airplanes, and maintaining saltwater reef aquariums. My wife, Mischelle and I have two children. Blake is a vitreoretinal surgeon and joined our practice in August of 2016. Laura has a masters degree in social work and works with young children at The Centenary Day School.