Dr. Jeffery J. Machat MD FRCSC DABO,
Chief Medical Director
- Learn About Dr. Machat
- A Message from Dr. Machat
- Dr. Machat’s Memorable Moments
Learn About Dr. Machat
Dr. Jeff Machat is a Canadian ophthalmologist, board certified in both Canada and the United States. Within months of graduating in 1990, Dr. Machat dedicated his practice completely to the advancement and development of Laser Vision Correction Technology and Techniques. His highly specialized practice was enhanced by his travels to Europe and South America where much of the research and development was performed, and he received his training. In 1993 he co-founded what became the largest laser vision correction provider in the world affiliated with over 1000 surgeons and over 14,000 optometrists in over 80 facilities that helped more than a million people see better. In the mid-1990s Dr. Machat authored two textbooks on Laser Vision Correction, “Excimer Laser Refractive Surgery: Practice and Principles” and “The Art of LASIK”. Today, Dr. Machat is the Founder and Chief Medical Director of Crystal Clear Vision™, a state of the art LASIK and Cataract Facility in the boutique Yorkville area of downtown Toronto. Dr. Machat wanted to build a world class facility equipped with the most up to date technology to instill confidence in his patients and provide an educational center for visiting doctors from across North America and internationally. Dr. Machat was one of the first ophthalmologists in North America to perform laser vision correction for his patients in 1991. Dr. Machat has always been an innovator and pioneer in the field of Laser Vision Correction, and began performing LASIK well ahead of other surgeons in Toronto. He was also the first refractive surgeon in Canada to perform Custom LASIK in March 2000 and the first to perform Custom All Laser LASIK utilizing a femtosecond Laser in February 2003. He has had a completely dedicated Laser Refractive Surgery practice for over 20 years, and has performed over 55,000 laser vision procedures. Dr. Machat lectures extensively worldwide and has presented in over 20 countries on five continents. He has helped train thousands of doctors in LASIK. Dr. Machat has also developed laser software and multiple instruments for PRK and LASIK and aided in the development of laser technology. Read more...
Dr. Machat has experience with 18 laser models from eight different Laser manufacturers including the Summit Excimed UV 200, VISX 20/20B, STAR, S2, S3 and S4, Technolas 116,117,217C, 217P, 217Z, Nidek EC5000, LaserSight LSX and AstraScan, Autonomous LadarVision 2000 and 4000, the Wavelight Allegretto Wave laser and the Schwind AMARIS 750S. He has been a consultant to multiple ophthalmic companies and laser manufacturers, and has participated in numerous FDA Clinical Trials.
Dr. Machat has experience with multiple microkeratomes including the Chiron ACS, Bausch & Lomb Hansatome, LaserSight UniShaper and UltraShaper, Moira One disposable, C-B Microkeratome and M2 units, Alcon-Summit SKBM and the Allergan Amadeus.
Dr. Machat has experience with both the Intralase Femtosecond laser and the Ziemer Femtosecond laser for corneal flap creation.
Dr. Machat was also a pioneer in Wavefront Technology utilizing Hartmann-Shack, Tscherning and Ray Tracing technology. He has performed over 25,000 Custom LASIK procedures to date with Bausch & Lomb Zyoptix, the Wavelight Allegretto Wave laser, the Autonomous LadarWave system, the Visx S4 CustomVue system and the AMARIS 750S. He has also performed cases with topographically linked systems including Technolas Topolink, LaserSight CIPTA, VISX C-CAP and AMARIS 750S.
Dr. Jeff Machat has also performed and helped evaluate multiple approaches to Presbyopia for the correction of reading vision, including multifocal ablations, scleral implants and the KAMRA Vision™ Reading procedure. Most importantly, based upon his clinical experience with these approaches, Dr. Machat became a patient himself and underwent the KAMRA vision ™ procedure in August 2012 in Tokyo, Japan. Hide...
Message from Dr. Machat
After two decades in the LASIK industry...I've learned a great deal.
When I began my professional career, I never imagined that laser vision correction would become as accurate and safe as it has. More than 30 million people around the world have now benefitted from this incredible technology. The journey started for me in 1989 while I was a senior resident in Ophthalmology at the University of Toronto. Read more...
Dr. Machat Looks Back at Some Memorable Moments in his Career:
A Life Changing Procedure Read more...
It was 1993, and I was filming my very first patient educational video.
The director came to my clinic and toured the facilities. He was talking to me and my staff. He was arrogant. He was asking questions but was not listening. He was trying to schedule the filming and wanted to make sure I understood how elaborate and expensive the undertaking was.
How much equipment there was, how many staff of his were involved. That I needed to have carefully selected patients with carefully scripted stories for their testimonials. That if the shoot was unsuccessful, they would need to charge me an additional $25,000. I repeated as I had over and over, "Come any day"; and so he picked the following Thursday.
They arrived early, and as he had promised. They had a lot of equipment and a lot of personnel. I really had no idea what everyone was supposed to do, but I was impressed. I remember vividly the very first patient that they asked to speak on camera. She had no warning that we were filming but she readily agreed. She was a month post-op and had driven a couple of hours with her husband to have the procedure. She was a very petite, 40 year old woman, with very short dark hair, and a mother of two young, very active boys. She had an innocence about her. The camera started to roll and she began to describe what it had been like to be -10.00 diopters. She told a story of how she had been in their swimming pool a year earlier with both her boys, her youngest just learning to swim. They were playing and her oldest knocked off her glasses, and her world disappeared. She heard her boys splashing around, screaming but she did not know if there were screams of laughter or panic. She yelled at them to stop and get out of the pool, and then she asked her older son to find her glasses. Once she could see again, she felt her heart racing, and could see the boys just staring at her without any understanding of the fear she had just experienced and why she yelled at them. This was her story. Every patient has one. It is the reason that lives within them and makes laser surgery so important to them. It is one of the reasons that Crystal Clear Vision™ was established.
The director, who by now started to understand what I had been telling him, then asked her, what has been the greatest pleasure for you since having the surgery. The woman replied, "making love to my husband and actually being able to see him." Everyone smiled, and was amused but it was something that I never thought about, never realized. Like most things that many of us with good vision take for granted. Needless to say, we did not use that response, and asked her for some other meaningful life changing benefits, which she readily supplied.
By the end of the day of filming, three of the crew had scheduled surgery, and the director had been brought to tears twice. By the time he left, I was no longer speaking with an arrogant director. He had changed too. His last words to me were, "and this happens everyday? Wow!" Hide...
A Soldier’s Story Read more...
In 2002 I found myself sitting in my exam across from a US Army Ranger who had traveled to Canada to see me. I was listening to him tell me about his visual needs after LASIK. The Ranger explained he was going to be dropped behind enemy lines in Afghanistan prior to a ground assault by American ground troops on a reconnaissance mission. He had -6.00D of myopia with -3.00D of astigmatism in each eye. I tried to explain to him that he was in the most severe 1% of prescriptions, that his visual needs were incredibly high and that Wavefront technology was new. I tried to provide him with realistic expectations. I was feeling quite intimidated. I confessed to him that I was afraid to treat him and that I knew he could kill me with a variety of weapons but I suspected he needed none. He then looked over at his wife and said, She is the one you need to worry about. As I looked toward her, I could see her nodding and smiling.
He told me that he had depended on gas permeable lenses for many years, and that not only were they no longer comfortable, but that he had been in life and death situations and had lost one of his lenses on more than one occasion. He explained that Afghanistan was not a friendly place, not for contacts lenses and not for him. He understood the risks but trusted me. Wavefront technology for his prescription in the USA was not yet available. Later that day I performed Custom LASIK on both his eyes as his wife watched through the glass window, and fortunately for us both, everything went very smoothly. He was a stoic man who did not move even the slightest degree during the procedure. I had performed tens of thousands of LASIK procedures, but somehow his trust in me, his very real and very dangerous mission ahead, made this day and his surgery take on an importance in my career that I will never forget.
The next morning I was overwhelmed to watch the Army Ranger easily read the 20/20 line with each eye. I not only felt a sense of pride, but a true sense of amazement at Wavefront technology. I had been performing laser vision correction for over a decade, and yet, Wavefront technology somehow had made me not just a better surgeon, but a far better surgeon. Although developed by Professor Theo Seiler, one of my mentors, as technology to reduce the induced spherical aberration and night glare that can be encountered with laser vision correction, manufacturers touted it originally as a procedure to target super-vision. Early trials did in fact demonstrate that about 50% of patients achieved at least one line improvement in best -corrected vision (BCVA). After a decade of having only 2% of my patients gain a line or more of BCVA, I too was astounded. However, what I really cared about, what really mattered, was that we were not only able to improve BCVA in so many people, but far more importantly, we were preserving BCVA. In most trials with Standard LASIK, we would always have 1-2% of patients lose 1-2 lines of BCVA, however with Wavefront Technology, it was rare that one of my Custom LASIK patients lost any BCVA. Custom LASIK patients preserved the sharpness, crispness and clarity of their vision far better than did Standard LASIK patients, and in many cases, actually improved their sharpness better than their glasses and soft contacts. Safety for me and for my patients was the most important consideration. For my Ranger, the enhanced safety profile of Wavefront technology was paramount.
The Army Ranger looked at me that morning and thanked me. It was not an emotional over the top thank you, but a solemn one. A heartfelt appreciation from a quiet man that did not understand fear, who had seen things that none of us could probably imagine, that was the stuff that movies were made from. He was not an actor. He did not receive the accolades of millions of adoring fans. He was one of the many thousands of dedicated troops that perform the impossible without legions of fans, without the inflated salaries, risking his life for others with little consideration for his own. Even though I was the surgeon and he was the patient, even though he had traveled to see me, and have me perform this miracle for him - it was I who felt most transformed. With his thanks, he handed me a coin. One that had an eagle emblazoned on an American flag on one side. He said he always carried it with him. It immediately filled my mind with vivid images of a clandestine meeting with the Secretary of Defense, or perhaps even the President himself that awarded him this medal for some unsung act of heroism, which could not be acknowledged publicly. In my mind, he was handing me his most treasured possession, filled with meaning of lives lost and saved. In reality, the coin was carried by thousands of special forces and signified a brotherhood, the greatest importance of which he explained, was that if you forgot the coin, then it was you who bought the drinks.
I Received More Than I Gave Read more...
In 2011, I visited Honduras for the third time as part of the CCV Eye Mission. Dr. Young Choi and Dr. Bonnie Mallard working with Dr. Marcela Fraser of UAB organized 16 students and doctors for a series of outreach clinics, seeing roughly 800 patients during the week. Dr. Sondra Black, my Clinical Director made the trip with me, and we visited two charity clinics on San Pedro Sula and two more on Roatan. We met with several other charities including Cepuda, Intensive Heart Ventures, Food for the Poor, and the local Rotary Club to coordinate our efforts.
I cannot thank the students and doctors from UAB adequately for all their hard work and efforts. The people were immensely grateful for the care they received. Overwhelmingly the greatest need was for glasses, in particular hyperopic (far-sighted) prescriptions, which I found a bit surprising, but apparently, is quite well known by the groups that have volunteered here in the past. About 20% of the patients will require some degree of surgical or medical intervention, typically requiring care for cataracts, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy or a vision threatening pterygium.
It was an amazing opportunity to give back, feel good, connect with colleagues and visit a beautiful country. I want to acknowledge the incredible efforts made by Dr. Kevin Waltz in San Pedro Sula for the past 15 years and by Dr. Young Choi in Loma de Luz for the next 15 years.
We do not recognize what we have until we spend time with people who have so little. My trips to Honduras gave me so very much, far more than I could ever give to the people - it not only made me a better doctor, but a better man.