June 2023
Volume 64, Issue 8
Open Access
ARVO Annual Meeting Abstract  |   June 2023
A Descriptive Analysis of Vitreoretinal Surgery Fellowship Program Directors
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Cheng Jiao
    Ophthalmology, Augusta University Medical College of Georgia, Augusta, Georgia, United States
  • Parth A Patel
    Ophthalmology, Augusta University Medical College of Georgia, Augusta, Georgia, United States
  • Shadman Ibnamasud
    Ophthalmology, Augusta University Medical College of Georgia, Augusta, Georgia, United States
  • Prem Patel
    Ophthalmology, The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center Medical School, Dallas, Texas, United States
  • Harris Ahmed
    Ophthalmology, Loma Linda University, Loma Linda, California, United States
  • Janice Law
    Ophthalmology, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, Tennessee, United States
  • Footnotes
    Commercial Relationships   Cheng Jiao None; Parth Patel None; Shadman Ibnamasud None; Prem Patel None; Harris Ahmed None; Janice Law None
  • Footnotes
    Support  None
Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science June 2023, Vol.64, 5352. doi:
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      Cheng Jiao, Parth A Patel, Shadman Ibnamasud, Prem Patel, Harris Ahmed, Janice Law; A Descriptive Analysis of Vitreoretinal Surgery Fellowship Program Directors. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2023;64(8):5352.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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Purpose : To evaluate the demographic, educational, and scholarly characteristics of Association of University Professors of Ophthalmology (AUPO)-accredited vitreoretinal surgery fellowship program directors (PDs).

Methods : Vitreoretinal surgery fellowships were identified from the AUPO Fellowship Compliance Committee database. Demographic and educational profiles of PDs were collated from online public resources. Measures of academic productivity and funding were queried from the Scopus database, NIH RePORTER module, and Open Payments database. Department ranking was determined via US News and program size was stratified according to the median number of retina faculty. Differences by PD gender, department rank, and program size were assessed using the Mann-Whitney U test and Fisher’s exact tests.

Results : Eighty-one PDs from 78 fellowships were identified, with a mean age of 54.7 ± 11.0 years. The minority were females (14.8%), who were on average six years younger than males (p = 0.07). Of all PDs, 98.6% had obtained their medical degree or completed residency in the US or Canada. Most had an academic affiliation (90.1%), predominantly with the rank of professor (54.8%). A notable proportion of PDs completed medical school (6.2%), residency (16.0%), or fellowship (22.2%) at their affiliated institution. Their mean h-index was 20.9 ± 14.9, mean five-year h-index was 5.9 ± 4.4, and mean m-quotient (a measure of average research productivity) was 0.82 ± 0.42. Among the PDs with NIH funding (25.9%), the average number of grants received was 2.4 ± 2.2, amounting to $2,168,251.38 ± $3,218,514.25. 75.3% of PDs received industry payments in 2021, which summed to a mean of $32,244.11 ± $117,322.62. When compared to their counterparts, PDs of both “top ten” and large programs published more manuscripts (p < 0.05), accrued more citations (p < 0.5), and had a higher h-index (p < 0.05). Fellowships with female PDs had a significantly larger proportion of female retina faculty (p = 0.002), although no other differences were observed between female and male PDs.

Conclusions : Vitreoretinal fellowship PDs are predominantly male allopathic graduates with the rank of professor who demonstrate prolific scholarly productivity. Faculty at larger, higher-ranked departments tended to have greater academic output. Because women remain underrepresented, there is a necessity to increase gender parity in this leadership position.

This abstract was presented at the 2023 ARVO Annual Meeting, held in New Orleans, LA, April 23-27, 2023.


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