Dr. David Schanzlin, M.D.

Dr. David Schanzlin, M.D.

Trusted LASIK Surgeons

Dr. David Schanzlin, M.D.

Dr. David J. Schanzlin, M.D., is an esteemed eye surgeon and a worldwide authority in refractive surgery.

He serves as one of the principal vision correction surgeons at the Gordon Schanzlin Vision Institute in La Jolla, California. The institute is a leading vision correction and care practice, renowned for its commitment to excellence, patient satisfaction, and safety.

  • Before entering private practice, Dr. Schanzlin held the position of a Professor and Refractive Surgeon at the Shiley Eye Institute of UC San Diego.
  • His contributions to ophthalmology have earned him prestigious awards, including the Barraquer Award, which is an honor award to one eye surgeon annually for his professional contributions to ophthalmology.
  • Dr. Schanzlin is consistently recognized as one of the Best Doctors in America by his peers in the field of refractive surgery.
  • He is an internationally acclaimed educator, delivering lectures in Europe, South America, Asia, and is a sought-after speaker at eye society conventions in the US.
  • Dr. Schanzlin has held significant leadership roles, including past President of the International Society of Refractive Surgery (ISRS), and has been involved with various professional ophthalmology societies and groups.

To meet Dr. Schanzlin and learn more about this surgeon’s practice and how he can help improve your eyesight, please visit Gordon Schanzlin New Vision Institute


Credentials and Qualification
Professional Credentials
Additional Career Highlights
Surgeon Bio


Gordon Schanzlin New Vision Institute

Appointments: (858) 455-6800

Gordon Schanzlin New Vision Institute

4130 La Jolla Village Drive, Suite 300 

 San Diego, CA 92037

Contact Dr. Schanzlin’s office at Contact Form for Gordon Schanzlin New Vision Institute  

Special discount* on LASIK and other elective surgery procedures offered by Dr. Schanzlin to members of U.S. military, local police and fire departments and certain family members. For more infoplease contact the surgeon’s office directly and mention Trusted LASIK Surgeons.

(Please let Dr. Schanzlin's office know you found him through his listing with Trusted LASIK SurgeonsTM)

Credentials and Qualifications

Dr. David J. Schanzlin has extensive professional credentials that Trusted LASIK Surgeons estimates place him among the top 1% of LASIK eye and refractive surgeons in the United States.

For your convenience, these credentials and criteria have been grouped by Experience, Patient Care and Credentials. In addition, Dr. Schanzlin has included some additional career highlights that while not used by Trusted LASIK Surgeons in our screening process, clearly supplement his highly distinguished career.

Dr. Schanzlin's s qualifications and credentials as one of the top LASIK surgeons include:


  • Over 20 years of experience performing laser vision surgery, including LASIK and PRK
  • Over 40 years of experience in refractive surgery (LASIK laser vision correction, cataract surgery, lens implants (IOLs), and RK)
  • Performed over 20,000 LASIK and laser vision procedures
  • Principal Investigator for several FDA Studies for laser manufacturers and post-market approval studies, and lens implants as well as a Co-Investigator for other studies
  • Several of National Institutes of Health (NIH) grants
  • Worldwide lead investigator over the 13 years of clinical studies and development for INTACS®
  • Past President of the International Society of Refractive Surgery
  • With the University of California-San Diego, Dr. Schanzlin helped establish the Shiley Eye Center as a prominent educational resource for ophthalmologists across the globe, 

Premier Patient Care

  • ”All-Laser” LASIK (bladeless) using the IntraLase laser
  • Wavefront Based (“Custom”) LASIK and PRK laser eye surgery
  • Use of iLASIK Procedure- WaveScan Technology, IntraLase, and Visx Advanced CustomVue treatments
  • Offers complete refractive surgery care
  • LASIK and PRK eye surgery
  • Intraocular lens implant surgery (IOLs) including Refractive Lensectomy (RLE) or Clear Lensectomy (CLE) using monofocal lenses, multifocal lenses, and accommodating lenses, as well as phakic implants
  • Limbal Relaxing Incisions
  • Cataract Eye Surgery (including cataract surgery with lens implants)
  • Offers Laser-Assisted Cataract Surgery
  • Other eye surgeons, optometrists, opticians, employees of companies that specialize in refractive surgery instrumentation or their family members have had their LASIK or other refractive and cataract surgery performed by Dr. Salz
  • Management of complications of surgery for new patients who had problems from a LASIK or other vision correction procedure performed by another doctor
  • Other eye surgeons, optometrists, opticians, employees of companies that specialize in refractive surgery instrumentation or their family members have had their LASIK and other refractive surgeries performed by Dr. Schanzlin

Professional Credentials

  • Certified by American Board of Ophthalmology
    • Associate Examiner
  • Editorial Boards (of Ophthalmology Journals):
    • Refractive and Corneal Surgery
    • Cornea
    • Video Journal of Ophthalmology
  • Reviewer (of Peer-Reviewed Search):
    • Journal of Cataract and Refractive Surgery, Journal of Refractive Surgery, American Journal of Ophthalmology, Archives of Ophthalmology, Cornea Magazine
    • Also has reviewed manuscripts on an ad hoc basis for American Journal of Ophthalmology, Cornea, Archives of Ophthalmology, Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, and the Contact Lens Association of Ophthalmologists Journal
  • Over 155 peer-reviewed scientific journal articles published
  • Over 30 text book chapters and text books published
  • Over 50 lectures on research topics at major eye meetings

Additional Career Highlights

  • Received “Top Doctors in San Diego Award” from San Diego Magazine
  • “Best Doctors in America Award” Consecutively listed since 1992
  • “Top Doctors in San Diego Award,” San Diego Magazine
  • Teacher of the Year, UCSD Department of Ophthalmology
  • VISX Star for Outstanding Achievement in Laser Correction
  • U.S. Public Health Service Research Award (1 F32EY05357-01)
  • NIH Special Fellowship: “Research Fellowship in Corneal
    Immunological Diseases”
  • Heed Ophthalmic Fellowship
  • Travel Award, Fight for Sight, Inc.


Surgeon Bio

David J. Schanzlin, M.D.,  is Gordon Schanzlin New Vision Institute is a leading vision care practice located in La Jolla, California. As a trusted provider in San Diego for years, the institute is renowned for its commitment to excellence. Patient satisfaction and safety are their top priorities, and they emphasize leadership, innovation, and affordability in their services.

Before going into private practice, Dr. Schanzlin was a Professor annd Refractive Surgeon and Director of Keratorefractive Surgery at the Shiley Eye Institute of UC San Diego.  Dr. Schanzlin has received some of the most esteemed awards in ophthalmology including the Barraquer Award, an honor given to one eye surgeon annually for his or her contributions to ophthalmology.  He is regarded as worldwide authority and leader in the refractive surgery field. 

Over his twenty-five years as a refractive surgeon, Dr. Schanzlin has had a hand in developing a number of new technologies. Some of these include Intacs, which have now been approved by the FDA, and the excimer laser, used in LASIK eye surgery. A review of his curriculum vitae shows that Dr. Schanzlin and his research teams have taken part in all of the notable developments within the field of laser vision correction.

Renowned as an educator internationally, Dr. Schanzlin lectures in Europe, South America, and Asia. In the US, he is a coveted speaker at eye society conventions. As a refractive surgeon, Dr. Schanzlin is consistently selected by his peers as one of the Best Doctors in America. He is also the immediate past President of the International Society of Refractive Surgery (ISRS). This society is comprised of the top 3500 refractive surgeons worldwide. Dr. Schanzlin was selected by entire membership to become president of the society, and he provided leadership for refractive surgery throughout the world from his home base at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD).Dr. Schanzlin was also selected to be a member of the American Ophthalmological Society, an exclusive honor that is shared by only a handful of San Diego ophthalmologists.

At the Shiley Eye Center, located in La Jolla, California, Dr. Schanzlin helped established an extensive refractive surgery unit that performs clinical studies of LASIK (for myopia and hyperopia), PRK, and Intacs. UCSD stays at the cutting edge of refractive corneal surgery by developing of fresh approaches in the laboratory. Before coming to the University of California at San Diego, Dr. Schanzlin conducted clinical investigations with the intra corneal ring and the refractive pico second laser. These clinical studies were backed up by basic research into the physiology of excimer laser wound healing, the area of the intra corneal ring, the injectable intra ocular lens, and the restoration of accommodation.

After joining the full-time faculty at the University of Southern California as an Assistant Professor of Ophthalmology, Dr. Schanzlin was named the Principal Investigator on the Prospective Evaluation of Radial Keratotomy study. This was a project of the National Eye Institute, which was federally funded to examine the safety and efficacy of radial keratotomy. The basic clinical trial research format that is still used today in assessing the results of refractive surgery procedures was established based on this particular study. Under Dr. Schanzlin's direction, USC was a lead center in this national study that revealed and documented a spectrum of problems associated with the radial keratotomy procedure.

While at the University of Southern California, Dr. Schanzlin was also principal investigator for epikeratophakia, "the living contact lens," for the correction of hyperopia, myopia, and keratoconus.His laboratory at USC also performed research into injectable intraocular lenses to restore accommodation, initial studies with the excimer laser, hydrogel synthetic epikeratoplasty, and the use of Los Alamos thermal keratoplasty to treat keratoconus and astigmatism. This exploration established Dr. Schanzlin as one of the top refractive surgery researchers in the world. Consequently, he was advanced within the academic ranks rapidly, achieving the position of full professor at University of Southern California in just five years.

Dr. Schanzlin was recruited to take over the Department of Ophthalmology at St. Louis University. From 1987 to 1996, he served the department professor and chairman. Under Dr. Schanzlin's guidance, the Department of Ophthalmology became one of the top eye training programs in the country. He oversaw successive expansions at the Bethesda Institute and the eventual completion of the Anheuser-Busch Eye Institute.

The University of California at San Diego invited Dr. Schanzlin to the Shiley Eye Center in La Jolla with the charge of forming an internationally recognized center of refractive surgery. He accepted and proceeded to establish the Shiley Eye Center at UCSD as a leading educational resource for ophthalmologists worldwide. They can come to the Center to learn the latest in the research and clinical practice of laser eye surgery.

While at Shiley, Dr. Schanzlin has also enlarged the keratorefractive surgery fellowship experience. Ophthalmologists who have completed their training can specialize in this growing field. The applicant pool usually about 100-200 ophthalmologists from across the globe, leaving Dr. Schanzlin with the difficult task of choosing the one or two most qualified candidates.

Dr. Schanzlin received his medical degree from the University of Chicago in 1975. He then completed his residency there from 1975-1978, where he became Chief Resident in Ophthalmology. Having decided to sub specialize in Cornea and External Diseases, Dr. Schanzlin completed fellowships at the University of Pittsburgh and the University of California at San Francisco.

Call (858) 455-6800 today for your consultation with a trusted expert LASIK eye surgeon and vision care specialist. You now have accurate information and a direct contact to an exceptional surgeon. Dr. Schanzlin and his exceptional staff are looking forward to meeting with you. Your questions and concerns are welcome. 

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