David Smits, M.D. is a cataract surgery and glaucoma specialist at Cheyenne Eye Clinic & Surgery Center. He’s been interested in medicine for as long as he can remember, but began focusing on the eyes after watching his first cataract surgery – an elegant procedure, he calls it, and one that has the ability to improve not only vision but also the quality of a person’s life; and to do so quickly.
Dr. Smits’ interest in glaucoma is rooted in his patients, too: he appreciates the continuity of care and the relationships he gets to build with his patients and the Cheyenne community. He is also drawn to glaucoma because there’s still a lot of work to be done in this field – research, therapeutics, technology, etc. Thinking about and working toward innovation in medicine is one of the most exciting parts of Dr. Smits’ job.
Since coming to the Eye Clinic in 2019, Dr. Smits has been working to bring teleophthalmology to Wyoming’s eye care patients. For glaucoma patients, this means bringing chronic care management into their own homes, which is especially beneficial for patients who live far from the clinic. Teleglaucoma includes measuring eye pressure with home devices that transmit it to the doctor for review instead of frequently driving to the clinic in Cheyenne to visit Dr. Smits in person.
Advancements in medicine and technology such as this help make patient care more efficient and more accessible. In the future, it will provide Dr. Smits with the opportunity to work closely with eye doctors across Wyoming’s communities to provide their patients with the best care possible.
Dr. Smits loves to do cataract surgeries, to care for his glaucoma patients and to work toward the advancement of medicine. But what he loves most is improving the vision and quality of life of his patients. One thing Dr. Smits wants all of his patients to think about is not taking their good vision for granted – and not taking their overall health for granted. Eye health is important, and sometimes – especially with glaucoma, which is the “silent thief of sight” – an eye disease can progress beyond the ability to heal it. Making sure to take care of yourself and have regular eye exams is really, truly important.