"I believe these comments and the deep emotions
they represent are my greatest reward as a doctor.
It is my pleasure to work with such wonderful people."
Dr. Steven Maskin

"When I first came to Dr. Maskin, I had been to a half a dozen other doctors before, each not quite understanding what I was going through, each not able to help my pain with Dry Eye Syndrome. As a patient, I was confused, bewildered, and frustrated. I didn't know why my eyes had dried out, and I was almost about to give up on my dream of becoming a doctor because my eyes not longer permitted me to study the long hours that I needed to as a pre-med."

"When I came into Dr. Maskin's office and he started to examine me, I began to cry because of the pain from my dry eyes and the frustration at them for limiting me. At seeing my tears, Dr. Maskin said, "I know that you have been to a lot of doctors, but I want to work through this with you. We are going to work through this together." He gave me a sense of hope when even I had given up hope, and he did exactly as he said he would. He helped me work through my Dry Eye Syndrome trying different therapies until we found what worked. He worked with me to schedule appointment times when I could come see him even when I moved out of state to get my Master's. He even worked with me to move up my surgery so that I could have it done the day before I left for a family vacation."

"Out of all the doctors that I have seen, he has done more for me than any other doctor. I am now a student at the University of South Florida College of Medicine, and I have finally reached my dream that I wouldn't have been able to before without the help of Dr. Maskin. I will always be truly thankful for his encouragement and his medical expertise. He is a wonderful physician, and I hope to one day follow in his footsteps."

Keely Fischbach
USF COM Class 2011

"Dr. Maskin really listens to me. He shows me a level of respect and understanding that has restored my confidence in the medical community. His approach is straightforward and he clearly explains his reasoning for each treatment. Dr. Maskin’s level of personal care and understanding keeps me at ease. I now have hope that, under his medical care, I will enjoy a better quality of life for many years to come."

Mary Cowen

"I am an Australian whose daughter contacted Dr. Maskin as soon as we heard about him and that he was performing a procedure for extreme Dry Eye Syndrome, called Amniotic Membrane Transplantation, and then made all the arrangements to have a consultation with him within 2 and ½ weeks."

"I have Sjogrens Syndrome and for 8 years I have been trying to get help and relief from the acute debilitating pain, burning irritation and discomfort of always feeling as though I have a large piece of foreign matter in my eyes, as well as though grit has been thrown into my eyes and they were being rubbed with sandpaper."

"Sometimes I felt as though my left eye, particularly, was being pierced with a sharp instrument and it was being twisted to cause the maximum pain. Repeatedly, I would say to the doctors here: " I can't believe that my eyes feel like this–yet you can't see anything"."

"I had tried every type of drops, ointment, lubricants, antibiotic drops for eyes, steroid drops and autologous drops."

"I was applying something every few minutes to try to get relief. I would watch the clock all day, till I could take medication to induce sleep, so that the oblivion of sleep gave me a few hours free of pain. On regaining consciousness after sleep, I was immediately aware of the pain in my eyes, especially the left eye. It is impossible to convey just how greatly acute Dry Eye Syndrome can impact on your, life and what a debilitating condition it can be."

"I did not have any moisture whatsoever coming into my eyes- the mucous glands had died. I could not stand being near any heat source. I had the tear ducts plugged 6 times with plugs of escalating size. They all came out after a few days. Then the tear ducts were sewn up, but the tissue became swollen and broke the gut. Then laser sealing of the tear ducts, but even that did not last very long. I had tried acupuncture."

"I could no longer read, sew or drive a car. My spatial judgment was so compromised it would have dangerous and irresponsible. I was dizzy and my balance was affected. My life had become so restricted and dependant on others."

"The difference since Dr. Maskin so successfully operated on me in June 2008 is incredible. No pain, no irritation or burning, none of the discomfort already described and my sight has improved."

"Dr. Maskin is performing pioneering and ground breaking surgery for this problem of Dry Eyes. He seems to be the only doctor in the world who is tackling this problem with the method he has perfected and performed on my eyes and those of so many others- Amniotic Membrane Transplantation. Many doctors are doing research but seem to trying to help the problem by developing drugs to replicate what the body is now failing to do in providing moisture for the eyes. I feel that Dr. Maskin is not only a great, skillful and incredible surgeon but is also a wonderfully warm and compassionate man who looks at all facets of the health of the patient and diagnosis the very best way of treating each patient on an individual basis. That is why no matter how much information you can send him, he tells you that "he cannot give you a definitive answer as to how much he can help you until he actually examines your eyes"."

"Dr. Maskin has given me a new lease on life, "a new beginning ". I feel that I may now, once again, start to have some quality in my life, something that has been missing for 8 years."

"I can never sufficiently thank Dr. Maskin, he is a truly magnificent doctor and human being and I would urge anybody who may be suffering any degree of dry eye from whatever reason to consult him and obtain the help that I have. He is here to help you."

"There are a number of smaller procedures that can be performed in his surgery to relieve the discomfort of even mild dry eye problem as well as the major procedure he performed on my eyes which has been affected so acutely and had become so distressingly debilitating. His staff at the clinic are extremely kind and helpful."

"It is no wonder that he has been voted by his peers as a "Best Doctor in America" and is regarded as one of America's top ophthalmologist. I think he should be voted "the Best Ophthalmologist in America". It was well worthwhile to make the long, tiring and arduous journey to Florida to see him and achieve the success with my eyes that has given me so much relief and freedom from pain."

"Thank you Dr. Maskin, you have given me back my life."

Marlene McAdam
Sydney, Australia
August, 2008

"A short note to let you know that you and your staff gave me a new lease on life. You are truly amazing and I can't thank you enough. The pain that I had 24-7 is completely gone and I dont have to bath my eyes open every morning. I wish everyone out there, with eye problems, knew that there was help for them. I am so grateful that Dr. Hall from the Pasadena Eye Clinic thought that you could help me and have helped me."

"Again thank you,"

Bonnie Jankowitz
St. Petersburg, FL

"Words cannot express my feelings of gratitude and respect."
Donna Bryan, Tampa

"Thanks for helping me to look at life in so many new ways."
Kasey Beckwith, Tampa

"Thank you for a new window on the world. Your skill and kindness will long be remembered."
Jeanine Forman-Ham, St. Pete Beach

"Thank you for treating me with interest and respect."
Kerry Daniel, Tampa

"I appreciate very much both the skilled and effective work you have done on my behalf and the friendly, caring manner in which you accomplished it."
Robert Frey, Gulfport

"I am truly very thankful for everything you have done....You are truly dedicated to your patients."
Lillian Brogan

"Your dedication to quality and your commitment to provide the best care to your patients is evident in all aspects of care you have provided to me."
Suzanne Jones, Naples

"Please know I am thankful and grateful for your diligence and thoroughness in caring for my eyes."
Penelope Cheatham, Redington Beach

"Thank you for giving me back my life."
Jim Young, Tampa

"We feel very privileged to have such a wonderful caring doctor and staff. Thank you for a chance to see just how beautiful this world of ours really is."
Bobby and Gala Greenway

Case Study:
Claudia Jenkins

A 50-year-old compassionate, dedicated nurse, who became very upset with her gradually failing vision, Claudia Jenkins was born with congenital ptosis. She had her eyelids lifted appropriately at about two years of age, so that she could learn to see. Because of her abnormal lids, she could not close them completely, leaving her cornea exposed and dry. Over the years, she developed corneal scarring from recurrent corneal infections and excessive dryness. The cumulative effect was that she was no longer readily able to do "fine" work, including reading the small print on medications and syringes. Her dry eye was starting to make it impossible for her to do her job.

When Dr. Maskin evaluated her, he found that she had an inadequate tear production, and that some of her few precious tears were being distributed to the outer corner of her eye rather than across her eye, due to a severe case of conjunctivochalasis (a pleating of the conjunctiva). He carefully removed the corneal scars, performed a punctal occlusion to increase her tear volume, and reconstructed the ocular surface using amniotic membrane to smooth the surface pleats and minimize risk of recurrent scarring of the cornea.

Claudia had this surgery performed in 2005 and was able to return to work. She can read that 20/20 line on the eye chart and says, "This is the best vision I have ever had."

Claudia later presented Dr. Maskin with a poem she wrote, "Have You Seen?" as an expression of her appreciation to him for restoring her sight. Her poem is presented below on this site.

Have You Seen?
Have you seen today?
I have.
How bright and sharp the world is.
Raindrops are crystal clear, distinct and
The color green, so many shades; look
there, how that bird can sing.

Have you seen today?
I have.

My, my hair is so very gray. But do I care?
The colors I see no longer muted, pale, or
the same.

Have you seen today?
I have.

The words jumping off a page, no longer
trying to see what I know is there.
How clear, how sharp the day really is.

Have you seen today?
I have.

And oh my, I can't wait to see tomorrow.

Have you seen today?
Courtesy of Claudia Jenkins.
Dedicated to
My parents, who gave me sight,
and to
Dr. Maskin, who restored it.
From Darkness
It is a light, so crisp, so sharp,
That has invoked a pain deep inside,
My views are of that never seen,
Yet no words....I hide.
I shadow with a vengeance,
A fear of something not known,
I feel that I am surrounded,
And yet, still so alone.
I uncover with some courage,
Some faith and great trust,
I want to share all the beauty,
It's not a choice, it's that I must.
My life has been that of darkness,
For which I've lived throughout each day,
Never a glimpse of friendly faces,
No smiles were seen my way.
But, today I live rejoicing,
For I know that God has might,
After many years of blindness,
I've been given the gift of sight!
by Angela Maskin - wife of Dr. Steven L Maskin
Published by the National Library of Poetry

A Gift Regained

Mrs. Eva Fogarty, an 89 year old accomplished painter, had become legally blind in both eyes. In 2004, Steven L. Maskin, M.D. was able to restore her vision through ocular surface reconstruction and corneal transplantation surgery. As a result of having her vision restored, Mrs. Fogarty was once again able to pursue her love of art and an express her passion by once again painting.

Near the end of 2005, Mrs. Fogarty discovered that on March 11, 2006, Dr. Maskin would be hosting the First Annual Focus on Females Women's Healthcare Symposium. She obtained the 2006 brochure of events which included the Focus on Females logo, and then a few weeks before the event, Mrs. Fogarty honored Dr. Maskin with two paintings depicting how she envisioned the Focus on Females Women's Health Symposium.

Mrs. Fogarty has graciously allowed one of her paintings be printed as posters for the Focus on Females Education Foundation, Inc. for the benefit of future Focus on Females Women's Healthcare Symposiums. Her original painting is on display in Dr. Maskin's office.