- Director, Contact Lens Service, UH Cleveland Medical Center
- Professor, CWRU School of Medicine
- Director; Vision Research Coordinating Center, UH Cleveland Medical Center
Dr. Loretta Szczotka-Flynn, OD, PhD, is a professor in the Case Western Reserve University Departments of Ophthalmology & Visual Sciences as well as Population & Quantitative Health Sciences. She is director of the Contact Lens Service at the University Hospitals Eye Institute since 1992. She received her Doctorate of Optometry and Masters of Physiological Optics from The Ohio State University in 1992, and her PhD in Epidemiology from Case Western Reserve University in 2009. She is a Fellow in the American Academy of Optometry and Diplomate in the Academy’s Section on Cornea, Contact Lenses and Refractive Technologies where she is past chair of the section. In order to become a Fellow in the Academy, excellence in patient care or research must be demonstrated. Fellows can be awarded Diplomate status by demonstrating exceptional skill in the area of cornea and contact lenses after rigorous testing and patient care demonstration. She is one of only 200 Diplomates in this section worldwide. She is also on the Council of the International Society for Contact Lens Research and on the Board of the International Keratoconus Academy.
Dr. Szczotka-Flynn currently serves on the editorial board for the peer reviewed journal Eye & Contact Lens. She has been a topical editor for Optometry & Vision Science (journal of the American Academy of Optometry) for 12 years. She became associate editor for Eye & Contact Lens in 2013. She is also a contributing editor for many trade journals including Contact Lens Spectrum and Review of Optometry.
Her clinical interests include contact lens complications, extended contact lens wear, silicone hydrogel contact lenses, scleral contact lenses, keratoconus, post-surgical contact lens fitting, pediatric medically necessary contact lenses, corneal imaging including topography and confocal microscopy, and following and fitting patients after corneal transplantation. She has authored or co-authored more than 80 peer reviewed manuscripts, 13 book chapters, 100 scientific meeting abstracts, and has been invited to present over 200 presentations world-wide. She is a highly sought after speaker in the area of contact lenses and has traveled around the world in that regard.
Her major research interests include contact lens associated corneal inflammation and infection, keratoconus, and corneal transplantation which have been funded by the National Eye Institute (NEI), a division of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). She also received significant funding from the American Optometric Foundation and industry. She participated in an eight-year study on keratoconus, the Collaborative Longitudinal Evaluation of Keratoconus (CLEK) Study from 1996 to 2004 where she was principal investigator for the site at Case Western Reserve University and University Hospitals. She was principal investigator of a longitudinal study on extended contact lens wear complications, the Longitudinal Analysis of Silicone Hydrogel (LASH) Contact Lens Study, also funded by the NEI and part of her PhD Dissertation. Her other research interests include contact lens related biofilms which were funded in part by Prevent Blindness America and the CLAO Educational Research Foundation. She recently completed, along with Dr. Jonathan Lass in the Department, the NEI funded Cornea Preservation Time Study where she was Director of the Coordinating Center. This study enrolled 1,330 participants across 40 centers in the U.S to study the effect of donor preservation time on graft success in endothelial corneal transplants. Twelve publications in high profile journal have resulted from this work changing eye banking and keratoplasty practices. In 2018-19 she was funded by NEI and Alcon Laboratories to study the genetic susceptibility to contact lens associated microbial keratitis, together with colleague Sudha Iyengar, PhD.
Other Notable Achievements
Her awards include: Ohio 1997 Young Optometrist of the Year, the Nissel Award from the British Contact Lens Association (BCLA) for excellence in Rigid Contact Lens Research in 2000, two Ezell Fellowships from the American Optometric Foundation, the Springer Award and Lecture from the University of Alabama-Birmingham, Prevent Blindness Ohio Female Scholar, British Contact Lens Association KeyNote speaker in 2015, and the Korb Award Recipient for Excellence in Contact Lens Education and Research from the American Optometric Association in 2015. She is one the 30 Most Influential In the Field of Contact Lenses Worldwide in the past 30 years as listed by Contact Lens Spectrum in 2016, one of the Top 250 Optometrists in the country as identified by Primary Care Optometry News, and The Ohio State University College of Optometry Distinguished Alumnus of the Year in 2017.
- Contact Lenses
- Dry Eye
Patient Satisfaction Reviews
4.8 out of 5
Patient Comments (13)
Reviewed On 2/11/2020
Very knowlegable and patient
Reviewed On 11/4/2019
Overall care was good
Reviewed On 10/24/2019
this was a great experience. I made the apt far in advance so it would work with my schedule. I was seen right away, the staff was very courteous and efficient. Dr S was really great. I will be sure to return to see her in a couple of years for my next eye exam. she listened, had good suggestions and offered to help me and take the time to transition to contact lenses in the future. very reassuring. I liked her very much.
Reviewed On 10/21/2019
She's not giving up on finding a contact to work for me!
Reviewed On 10/6/2019
the doctor the eye practitioner they were both fabulous absolutely fabulous the only thing is the receptionist in the front they were a little on the snobby side [...]
Reviewed On 10/6/2019
If there was a Hall of Fame for contact lens specialists Dr. Szczotka -Flynn deserves to be in it. She is beyond excellent. Always a excellent experience.
Reviewed On 10/6/2019
this provider is usually busy so the wait is expected. my eyes are an ongoing problem she is trying to improve. she is better at that than previous eye doctors I had.
Reviewed On 8/6/2019
This has been the best contact fitting I have ever had. She figured out what worked and helped me where contact lenses again. She is the best provider I have ever seen. I have told everyone I know to see her!!Thank you
Reviewed On 8/3/2019
I have been coming to UH for over 25 years, [...] I have participated in research programs and have been very pleased with the service from all your providers.
Reviewed On 7/23/2019
I like her very much. my eyes are a difficult problem, but she is trying different things to help.
Reviewed On 7/19/2019
This is perhaps the most knowledgeable optometrist I have ever seen. I have had a lot of trouble with contacts and she has been great!! She is really trying to help me. The verdict is still out on whether or not I will be able to wear lenses but it will not be for lack of skill or trying on her part. She is the best and very good. You are lucky to have her working for you!!
Reviewed On 7/18/2019
Dr. S-F is now the doctor I've had the longest relationship with and she's been superb. I feel in good hands having her watching my [...], and managing my difficult-to-fit contact lenses, especially now as my long-time cornea surgeon has retired.
Reviewed On 7/6/2019
My eye doctor is probably the best doctor I've ever had the privelige of being treated by. she is the only doctor that has successfully treated my eye condition [...] in the 20 years I have dealt with it, and I will see her to treat it until she retires.
Case Western Reserve University (2010)
The Ohio State University College Of Optometry (1992)
The Ohio State University (1992)
University Of Michigan (1988)
University Hospitals is committed to transparency in our interactions with industry partners, such as pharmaceutical, biotech, or medical device companies. At UH, we disclose practitioner and their family members’ ownership and intellectual property rights that are or in the process of being commercialized. In addition, we disclose payments to employed practitioners of $5,000 or more from companies with which the practitioners interact as part of their professional activities. These practitioner-industry relationships assist in developing new drugs, devices and therapies and in providing medical education aimed at improving quality of care and enhancing clinical outcomes. At the same time, UH understands that these relationships may create a conflict of interest. In providing this information, UH desires to assist patients in talking with their practitioners about industry relationships and how those relationships may impact their medical care.
UH practitioners seek advance approval for certain new industry relationships. In addition, practitioners report their industry relationships and activities, as well as those of their immediate family members, to the UH Office of Outside Interests annually. We review these reports and implement management plans, as appropriate, to address conflicts of interest that may arise in connection with medical research, clinical care and purchasing decisions.
View UH’s policy (PDF) on practitioner-industry relationships.
As of December 31, 2016, Loretta Szczotka-Flynn did not disclose any Outside Relationships with Industry.