Gass, Donald (1929-2005)

 Digital Record
Identifier: 1003
Gass, Donald (1929-2005)


  • 2005 - 2005

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Historical or Biographical Note

Dr. Donald Gass (1929-2005) was a pioneer in ophthalmology. He was widely recognized as the premier medical retina specialist in the world. He was born in Prince Edward Island, Canada, and raised in Nashville, Tennessee. Dr. Gass graduated from Vanderbilt University in 1950 and, immediately after graduation, served three years in the Navy in Korea and Japan. He returned to Vanderbilt, entered medical school, and graduated in 1957 as the Founder's Medalist. After medical school, Dr. Gass served an internship at the University of Iowa, then his residency at the Wilmer Institute at Johns Hopkins Hospital and a fellowship at the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology. In 1963 he joined the faculty of the newly established Bascom Palmer Eye Institute at the University of Miami Medical School, where he stayed for 32 years. Dr. Gass began his career practicing general ophthalmology but became actively involved in ocular surgery for cataract, glaucoma, orbital, and retinal diseases. As his practice and research interests evolved, Dr. Gass became a specialist in degenerative inflammatory and neoplastic diseases of the inner eye. He authored a textbook, Stereoscopic Atlas of Macular Diseases: Diagnosis and Treatment, the premier medical textbook on this subject.

Dr. Gass and his wife returned to Nashville in 1995 to be close to family. At this time Dr. Gass joined the Vanderbilt faculty and worked at the Vanderbilt Eye Institute. Dr. Gass received many awards during his lifetime, including the Helen Keller Prize for Vision Research in 2001.

Language of Materials



Biographical file includes obituary, article from VUMC Reporter 3-4-05, and two scanned photos.

Repository Details

Part of the VUMC Historical Images and Biographies Repository

Eskind Biomedical Library
2209 Garland Ave.
Nashville TN 37232


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