I love my job. Whether I am at home or at work, I love to be able to fix things when they aren’t working the way they should, and my work as a strabismus surgeon gives me a chance to do that. It is interesting, gratifying, and it turns out to be a lot of fun, too.


Caregiver Profile

Caregiver Profile

Meet Dr. David Hunter


Undergraduate Degree

  • Rice University , 1979 , Houston , TX

Graduate Degree

  • Baylor College of Medicine , 1984 , Houston , TX

Medical School

  • Baylor College of Medicine , 1987 , Houston , TX


  • Framingham Union Hospital , 1988 , Framingham , MA


  • Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary / Harvard Medical School , 1991 , Boston , MA


Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus
  • The Wilmer Ophthalmological Institute, Johns Hopkins University , 1992 , Baltimore , MD

Philosophy of Care

Having trained as an engineer before going to medical school, I realized that the more we learn about how something works, the better we are able to fix it. As a doctor and surgeon, I try to use those same principles, taking each case as unique, trying to understand as much as possible the nature of the problem before setting out to try to correct it. That approach can, in some cases, lead to entirely new treatments. But I’ve also learned that listening and educating is as much a part of being a doctor as any sort of medicine or surgery. Not every condition can be cured, but if I can at least transmit my understanding of the diagnosis and of what to expect in the future, then the healing can begin.


David G. Hunter, MD, PhD is Ophthalmologist-in-Chief and the Richard M. Robb Chair of Ophthalmology at Children's Hospital Boston, President of the Children's Hospital Ophthalmology Foundation, and Professor and Vice Chair of Ophthalmology at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Hunter obtained a Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering from Rice University and a PhD (in Cell Biology) and MD from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. After he completed an ophthalmology residency at Harvard's Mass Eye and Ear Infirmary, he was a fellow at the Wilmer Ophthalmological Institute, Johns Hopkins University, where he remained on faculty until he was selected to become Ophthalmologist-in-Chief at Children's in the early 2000’s. During his time at Children's, the Department of Ophthalmology at Children's Hospital Boston has grown to become the largest pediatric ophthalmology department in the nation and perhaps the world, with 30 full-time faculty, including 15 full-time and 4 affiliated MD ophthalmologists and 6 pediatric optometrists, with pediatric subspecialists in nearly every aspect of ophthalmology, as well as 7 full-time research faculty. The department also has created 7 endowed chairs as well as an endowed international observership to support clinical and basic research, teaching, and the worldwide dissemination of advances in pediatric ophthalmology and strabismus. Dr. Hunter is co-author of the textbook Learning Strabismus Surgery and of the best-selling review manual Last Minute Optics (now in its second edition.) His lectures on optics and refraction for ophthalmologists-in-training around the world are now available free of charge in podcast format.

Notable Resources

Q+A on Adult Strabismus

Watch Dr. Hunter perform strabismus surgery via “LoupeCam”

Read some patient stories


  • American Board of Ophthalmology


Publications powered by Harvard Catalyst Profiles

  1. Randomized Controlled Trial of a Dichoptic Digital Therapeutic for Amblyopia. Ophthalmology. 2021 Sep 14. View abstract
  2. Effect of Sequential and Simultaneous Patching Regimens in Unilateral Amblyopia. Am J Ophthalmol. 2021 Jul 22. View abstract
  3. Botulinum toxin injection of the inferior oblique muscles for V-pattern strabismus and primary position hypertropia. Am J Ophthalmol. 2021 Jul 17. View abstract
  4. Evaluation of the blinq vision scanner for detection of amblyopia and strabismus. J AAPOS. 2021 08; 25(4):214.e1-214.e7. View abstract
  5. Virtual reality prototype for binocular therapy in older children and adults with amblyopia. J AAPOS. 2021 08; 25(4):217.e1-217.e6. View abstract
  6. Identifying Characteristics Predictive of Lost-to-Follow-Up Status in Amblyopia. Am J Ophthalmol. 2021 May 13; 230:200-206. View abstract
  7. Making change at Journal of AAPOS: looking back and moving forward. J AAPOS. 2021 06; 25(3):135-136. View abstract
  8. Digital therapeutic improves visual acuity and encourages high adherence in amblyopic children in open-label pilot study. J AAPOS. 2021 04; 25(2):87.e1-87.e6. View abstract
  9. Drive-by Photoscreening [Letter]. Clin Ophthalmol. 2021; 15:1443-1444. View abstract
  10. Emerging therapies for amblyopia. Semin Ophthalmol. 2021 May 19; 36(4):282-288. View abstract
  11. Novel variants in TUBA1A cause congenital fibrosis of the extraocular muscles with or without malformations of cortical brain development. Eur J Hum Genet. 2021 05; 29(5):816-826. View abstract
  12. Use of Botulinum Toxin in Ophthalmology. Handb Exp Pharmacol. 2021; 263:147-160. View abstract
  13. Incidence of symptomatic vertical and torsional diplopia after superior rectus transposition for esotropic Duane syndrome and abducens nerve palsy. J AAPOS. 2020 10; 24(5):270.e1-270.e5. View abstract
  14. In Vivo Quasi-Elastic Light Scattering Eye Scanner Detects Molecular Aging in Humans. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2020 09 16; 75(9):e53-e62. View abstract
  15. Validation of the Birefringent Amblyopia Screener (Retinal Polarization Scanner), the Rebion Blinq.™ [Letter]. Clin Ophthalmol. 2020; 14:2599-2600. View abstract
  16. Self-grading effect of inferior oblique myectomy and recession. J AAPOS. 2020 08; 24(4):218.e1-218.e6. View abstract
  17. Recurrent Rare Copy Number Variants Increase Risk for Esotropia. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2020 08 03; 61(10):22. View abstract
  18. Improved adherence and treatment outcomes with an engaging, personalized digital therapeutic in amblyopia. Sci Rep. 2020 05 20; 10(1):8328. View abstract
  19. Virtual Visits in Ophthalmology: Timely Advice for Implementation During the COVID-19 Public Health Crisis. Telemed J E Health. 2020 09; 26(9):1113-1117. View abstract
  20. Reply. J AAPOS. 2020 04; 24(2):128. View abstract
  21. Evaluating Amblyopia Treatment Success Using the American Academy of Ophthalmology IRIS50 Measures. Ophthalmology. 2020 06; 127(6):836-838. View abstract
  22. Severe reverse amblyopia with atropine penalization. J AAPOS. 2020 04; 24(2):106-108. View abstract
  23. Effect of Primary Occlusion Therapy in Asymmetric, Bilateral Amblyopia. Am J Ophthalmol. 2020 03; 211:87-93. View abstract
  24. Anomalous superior oblique muscles and tendons in congenital fibrosis of the extraocular muscles. J AAPOS. 2019 12; 23(6):325.e1-325.e6. View abstract
  25. Outcomes of strabismus surgery in genetically confirmed congenital fibrosis of the extraocular muscles. J AAPOS. 2019 10; 23(5):253.e1-253.e6. View abstract
  26. Accurately Assessing Visual Deficits in Children With Developmental Dyslexia-Reply. JAMA Ophthalmol. 2019 Aug 01; 137(8):955-956. View abstract
  27. The Role of Botulinum Toxin in the Treatment of Strabismus. Semin Ophthalmol. 2019; 34(4):198-204. View abstract
  28. Validation of StrabisPIX, a Mobile Application for Home Measurement of Ocular Alignment. Transl Vis Sci Technol. 2019 Mar; 8(2):9. View abstract
  29. Self-reported visual symptoms in children with developmental dyslexia. Vision Res. 2019 02; 155:11-16. View abstract
  30. Transposition procedures in Duane retraction syndrome. J AAPOS. 2019 02; 23(1):5-14. View abstract
  31. Frequency of Visual Deficits in Children With Developmental Dyslexia. JAMA Ophthalmol. 2018 10 01; 136(10):1089-1095. View abstract
  32. Improving Access-but Not Outcomes-With Iris Optical Coherence Tomography Angiography. JAMA Ophthalmol. 2018 09 01; 136(9):1045-1046. View abstract
  33. Anomalous Vertical Deviations in Attempted Abduction Occur in the Majority of Patients With Esotropic Duane Syndrome. Am J Ophthalmol. 2018 11; 195:171-175. View abstract
  34. Genome-Wide Association Study Identifies a Susceptibility Locus for Comitant Esotropia and Suggests a Parent-of-Origin Effect. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2018 08 01; 59(10):4054-4064. View abstract
  35. Public Health Burden and Potential Interventions for Myopia. Ophthalmology. 2018 05; 125(5):628-630. View abstract
  36. Lens regeneration in children. Nature. 2018 04 04; 556(7699):E2-E3. View abstract
  37. Congenital muscular dystrophy-dystroglycanopathy, type A, featuring bilateral retinal dysplasia and vertical angle kappa. J AAPOS. 2018 06; 22(3):242-244.e1. View abstract
  38. The Effect of Botulinum Toxin Augmentation on Strabismus Surgery for Large-Angle Infantile Esotropia. Am J Ophthalmol. 2018 05; 189:160-165. View abstract
  39. Long-term Surgical Outcomes for Large-angle Infantile Esotropia. Am J Ophthalmol. 2018 05; 189:155-159. View abstract
  40. Infantile and Early Acquired Ophthalmoplegic Syndromes. J Binocul Vis Ocul Motil. 2018 Jan-Mar; 68(1):7-9. View abstract
  41. Superior oblique myokymia treated with levobunolol. J AAPOS. 2018 02; 22(1):67-69.e2. View abstract
  42. Diplopia after Strabismus Surgery. Semin Ophthalmol. 2018; 33(1):102-107. View abstract
  43. Superior oblique myokymia. Surv Ophthalmol. 2018 Jul - Aug; 63(4):507-517. View abstract
  44. Central serous chorioretinopathy following medial transposition of split lateral rectus muscle for complete oculomotor nerve palsy. J AAPOS. 2017 12; 21(6):517-518. View abstract
  45. Reduced surgical success rate of rectus muscle plication compared to resection. J AAPOS. 2017 Jun; 21(3):201-204. View abstract
  46. Sedated suture adjustment in children undergoing adjustable suture strabismus surgery. J AAPOS. 2017 Jun; 21(3):196-200. View abstract
  47. Comparison of Botulinum Toxin With Surgery for the Treatment of Acute-Onset Comitant Esotropia in Children. Am J Ophthalmol. 2017 Apr; 176:33-39. View abstract
  48. Reply. Ophthalmology. 2017 01; 124(1):e11. View abstract
  49. Advances in Amblyopia Treatment: Paradigm Shifts and Future Directions. Int Ophthalmol Clin. 2017; 57(4):117-128. View abstract
  50. Duane syndrome with prominent oculo-auricular phenomenon. J AAPOS. 2017 Apr; 21(2):165-167. View abstract
  51. Evaluation of the Risk of Postoperative Infection in Adjustable Suture Strabismus Surgery. JAMA Ophthalmol. 2016 10 01; 134(10):1156-1157. View abstract
  52. Loss of MAFB Function in Humans and Mice Causes Duane Syndrome, Aberrant Extraocular Muscle Innervation, and Inner-Ear Defects. Am J Hum Genet. 2016 06 02; 98(6):1220-1227. View abstract
  53. Bifocals Fail to Improve Stereopsis Outcomes in High AC/A Accommodative Esotropia. Ophthalmology. 2016 Apr; 123(4):690-6. View abstract
  54. Two unique TUBB3 mutations cause both CFEOM3 and malformations of cortical development. . 2016 Feb; 170A(2):297-305. View abstract
  55. Changes in Lateral Comitance After Asymmetric Horizontal Strabismus Surgery. JAMA Ophthalmol. 2015 Nov; 133(11):1241-6. View abstract
  56. Surgical management of strabismus in Duane retraction syndrome. J AAPOS. 2015 Feb; 19(1):63-9. View abstract
  57. Treatment of amblyopia: the "eye pad," or the iPad? J AAPOS. 2015 Feb; 19(1):1-2. View abstract
  58. Scleral perforations during routine traction test in a patient with osteogenesis imperfecta. J AAPOS. 2014 Dec; 18(6):610-2. View abstract
  59. Complications of strabismus surgery: incidence and risk factors. Semin Ophthalmol. 2014 Sep-Nov; 29(5-6):421-8. View abstract
  60. Adjustable nasal transposition of split lateral rectus muscle for third nerve palsy. JAMA Ophthalmol. 2014 Aug; 132(8):963-9. View abstract
  61. Assessing binocular interaction in amblyopia and its clinical feasibility. PLoS One. 2014; 9(6):e100156. View abstract
  62. Adjustable sutures in children. J AAPOS. 2014 Jun; 18(3):278-84. View abstract
  63. Goal-determined metrics to assess outcomes of esotropia surgery. J AAPOS. 2014 Jun; 18(3):211-6. View abstract
  64. Superior rectus transposition vs medial rectus recession for treatment of esotropic Duane syndrome. JAMA Ophthalmol. 2014 Jun; 132(6):669-75. View abstract
  65. Displacement of optical centers in over-the-counter readers: a potential cause of diplopia. J AAPOS. 2014 Jun; 18(3):293-4. View abstract
  66. Diagnostic distinctions and genetic analysis of patients diagnosed with moebius syndrome. Ophthalmology. 2014 Jul; 121(7):1461-8. View abstract
  67. Accuracy of vision screening. J AAPOS. 2013 Dec; 17(6):652-3. View abstract
  68. The genetic basis of incomitant strabismus: consolidation of the current knowledge of the genetic foundations of disease. Semin Ophthalmol. 2013 Sep-Nov; 28(5-6):427-37. View abstract
  69. Intentional extreme anisometropic pseudophakic monovision. J Cataract Refract Surg. 2013 Feb; 39(2):309-10. View abstract
  70. A novel syndrome caused by the E410K amino acid substitution in the neuronal ß-tubulin isotype 3. Brain. 2013 Feb; 136(Pt 2):522-35. View abstract
  71. Targeting treatable disease--not just risk factors--in pediatric vision screening. J AAPOS. 2013 Feb; 17(1):2-3. View abstract
  72. HOXB1 founder mutation in humans recapitulates the phenotype of Hoxb1-/- mice. Am J Hum Genet. 2012 Jul 13; 91(1):171-9. View abstract
  73. Extraocular muscles in patients with infantile nystagmus: adaptations at the effector level. Arch Ophthalmol. 2012 Mar; 130(3):343-9. View abstract
  74. Superior rectus transposition and medial rectus recession for Duane syndrome and sixth nerve palsy. Arch Ophthalmol. 2012 Feb; 130(2):195-201. View abstract
  75. Expansion of the CHN1 strabismus phenotype. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2011 Aug 11; 52(9):6321-8. View abstract
  76. Isolated bilateral fourth cranial nerve palsies as the presenting sign of hydrocephalus. Case Rep Ophthalmol. 2011 May; 2(2):211-4. View abstract
  77. Adjustable suture strabismus surgery. Eye (Lond). 2011 Oct; 25(10):1262-76. View abstract
  78. Rapid, high-accuracy detection of strabismus and amblyopia using the pediatric vision scanner. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2011 Jul 07; 52(8):5043-8. View abstract
  79. Case reports, reviews, and changes to the Journal of AAPOS. J AAPOS. 2011 Apr; 15(2):117-8. View abstract
  80. The clinical and molecular genetic features of idiopathic infantile periodic alternating nystagmus. Brain. 2011 Mar; 134(Pt 3):892-902. View abstract
  81. Alzheimer's disease amyloid-beta links lens and brain pathology in Down syndrome. PLoS One. 2010 May 20; 5(5):e10659. View abstract
  82. Introducing AAPOS Workshops. J AAPOS. 2010 Feb; 14(1):1. View abstract
  83. Human TUBB3 mutations perturb microtubule dynamics, kinesin interactions, and axon guidance. Cell. 2010 Jan 08; 140(1):74-87. View abstract
  84. Do we need evidence for everything? Am Orthopt J. 2010; 60:59-62. View abstract
  85. Short tag noose technique for optional and late suture adjustment in strabismus surgery. Arch Ophthalmol. 2009 Dec; 127(12):1584-90. View abstract
  86. Preventing corneal abrasions in critically ill children receiving neuromuscular blockade: a randomized, controlled trial. Pediatr Crit Care Med. 2009 Mar; 10(2):171-5. View abstract
  87. Central fusion disruption following irradiation of neoplasms in the pineal region. Arch Ophthalmol. 2009 Mar; 127(3):337-8. View abstract
  88. Long-term results of an intraoperative adjustable superior oblique tendon suture spacer using nonabsorbable suture for Brown Syndrome. Ophthalmology. 2008 Oct; 115(10):1800-4. View abstract
  89. Pediatric Graves' ophthalmopathy: the pre- and postpubertal experience. J AAPOS. 2008 Aug; 12(4):357-60. View abstract
  90. Congenital fibrosis of the extraocular muscles. Semin Ophthalmol. 2008 Jan-Feb; 23(1):3-8. View abstract
  91. Three novel mutations in KIF21A highlight the importance of the third coiled-coil stalk domain in the etiology of CFEOM1. BMC Genet. 2007 May 18; 8:26. View abstract
  92. Patterns of eye care use and expenditures among children with diagnosed eye conditions. J AAPOS. 2007 Oct; 11(5):480-7. View abstract
  93. The assessment and management of chronic hamstring/posterior thigh pain. Best Pract Res Clin Rheumatol. 2007 Apr; 21(2):261-77. View abstract
  94. Directional eye fixation sensor using birefringence-based foveal detection. Appl Opt. 2007 Apr 01; 46(10):1809-18. View abstract
  95. Mutations in FRMD7, a newly identified member of the FERM family, cause X-linked idiopathic congenital nystagmus. Nat Genet. 2006 Nov; 38(11):1242-4. View abstract
  96. Prevalence and correlates of children's diagnosed eye and vision conditions. Ophthalmology. 2006 Dec; 113(12):2298-306. View abstract
  97. Birefringence-based eye fixation monitor with no moving parts. J Biomed Opt. 2006 May-Jun; 11(3):34025. View abstract
  98. The Pediatric Vision Screener III: detection of strabismus in children. Arch Ophthalmol. 2006 Apr; 124(4):509-13. View abstract
  99. Amblyopia: diagnostic and therapeutic options. Am J Ophthalmol. 2006 Jan; 141(1):175-184. View abstract
  100. A novel KIF21A mutation in a patient with congenital fibrosis of the extraocular muscles and Marcus Gunn jaw-winking phenomenon. Arch Ophthalmol. 2005 Sep; 123(9):1254-9. View abstract
  101. Early detection vs late treatment of amblyopia. JAMA. 2005 Apr 20; 293(15):1920-22. View abstract
  102. Rapid, objective detection of cataract-induced blur using a bull's eye photodetector. J Cataract Refract Surg. 2005 Apr; 31(4):763-70. View abstract
  103. Treatment of amblyopia in older children. Arch Ophthalmol. 2005 Apr; 123(4):557-8. View abstract
  104. Pediatric Vision Screener 2: pilot study in adults. J Biomed Opt. 2004 Nov-Dec; 9(6):1369-74. View abstract
  105. Pediatric Vision Screener 1: instrument design and operation. J Biomed Opt. 2004 Nov-Dec; 9(6):1363-8. View abstract
  106. Automated detection of ocular focus. J Biomed Opt. 2004 Sep-Oct; 9(5):1103-9. View abstract
  107. Automated detection of ocular alignment with binocular retinal birefringence scanning. Appl Opt. 2003 Jun 01; 42(16):3047-53. View abstract
  108. No colobomas in "renal coloboma" syndrome. Ophthalmology. 2003 Feb; 110(2):251; author reply 251-2. View abstract
  109. Papillorenal syndrome in a Brazilian family. Arch Ophthalmol. 2002 Dec; 120(12):1772-3; author reply 1773. View abstract
  110. Papillorenal ("renal coloboma") syndrome. Am J Ophthalmol. 2002 Aug; 134(2):300-1; author reply 301. View abstract
  111. Long-term outcome of uncomplicated infantile exotropia. J AAPOS. 2001 Dec; 5(6):352-6. View abstract
  112. Diplopia after limited macular translocation surgery. J AAPOS. 2001 Dec; 5(6):388-94. View abstract
  113. Dynamic retinoscopy: the missing data. Surv Ophthalmol. 2001 Nov-Dec; 46(3):269-74. View abstract
  114. Superior oblique overaction from local anesthesia for cataract surgery. J AAPOS. 2001 Oct; 5(5):329-32. View abstract
  115. Multifocal intraocular lenses in children. Ophthalmology. 2001 Aug; 108(8):1373-4. View abstract
  116. An adjustable superior oblique tendon spacer with the use of nonabsorbable suture. J AAPOS. 2001 Jun; 5(3):164-71. View abstract
  117. Redefining papillorenal syndrome: an underdiagnosed cause of ocular and renal morbidity. Ophthalmology. 2001 Apr; 108(4):738-49. View abstract
  118. Grand rounds #63: a case of a bilateral gaze limitation with diplopia for reading after two surgical procedures to treat a right medical rectus muscle paresis. Binocul Vis Strabismus Q. 2001; 16(3):192-200. View abstract
  119. Investigation into the relationship between the passive flexibility and active stiffness of the ankle plantar-flexor muscles. Clin Biomech (Bristol, Avon). 2000 Oct; 15(8):600-6. View abstract
  120. A proposed simple method for measurement in the anterior chamber angle: biometric gonioscopy. Ophthalmology. 1999 Nov; 106(11):2161-7. View abstract
  121. Prevalence of systemic and ocular disease in infantile exotropia: comparison with infantile esotropia. Ophthalmology. 1999 Oct; 106(10):1951-6. View abstract
  122. Mathematical modeling of retinal birefringence scanning. J Opt Soc Am A Opt Image Sci Vis. 1999 Sep; 16(9):2103-11. View abstract
  123. Automated detection of foveal fixation by use of retinal birefringence scanning. Appl Opt. 1999 Mar 01; 38(7):1273-9. View abstract
  124. Familial exudative vitreoretinopathy associated with monocular axial myopia. Retina. 1999; 19(3):257-9. View abstract
  125. A randomized comparison study of drop versus spray topical cycloplegic application. Binocul Vis Strabismus Q. 1999; 14(2):107-10. View abstract
  126. Vertical location of the corneal light reflex in strabismus photography. Arch Ophthalmol. 1998 Jun; 116(6):767-71. View abstract
  127. Automated analysis of electromyographic (EMG) recordings during botulinum injections. J Pediatr Ophthalmol Strabismus. 1996 Sep-Oct; 33(5):241-6. View abstract
  128. Benefits of strabismus surgery in patients with one blind eye. Arch Ophthalmol. 1995 Apr; 113(4):404. View abstract
  129. Inferior oblique muscle injury from local anesthesia for cataract surgery. Ophthalmology. 1995 Mar; 102(3):501-9. View abstract
  130. Diode laser photocoagulation for threshold retinopathy of prematurity. A randomized study. Ophthalmology. 1993 Feb; 100(2):238-44. View abstract
  131. Pupillary capture of a flexible silicone posterior chamber intraocular lens. Arch Ophthalmol. 1992 May; 110(5):609. View abstract
  132. Retinopathy of prematurity: pathogenesis, diagnosis, and treatment. Int Ophthalmol Clin. 1992; 32(1):163-84. View abstract
  133. Abnormal axonemes in X-linked retinitis pigmentosa. Arch Ophthalmol. 1988 Mar; 106(3):362-8. View abstract
  134. Abnormal sperm and photoreceptor axonemes in Usher's syndrome. Arch Ophthalmol. 1986 Mar; 104(3):385-9. View abstract
  135. Abnormal axonemes in sperm of fertile men. Arch Androl. 1986; 16(1):1-12. View abstract
  136. Vitamin E protects against retinopathy of prematurity through action on spindle cells. Nature. 1984 Jun 28-Jul 4; 309(5971):793-5. View abstract