Department Ophthalmology
Primary Location Cleveland Clinic Main Campus
Type of Doctor Both Adults and Children & Adolescents
Languages English
Surgeon Yes
Cleveland Clinic Main Campus
Primary Location

Cleveland Clinic Main Campus

Specialties & Treatments

Treatment & Services

  • Ophthalmology
  • Pediatric Ophthalmology
View all 2 Treatment & Services +

Specialty in Diseases & Conditions

  • Age-Related Macular Degeneration
  • Pediatric Retinal Detachment
  • Retinal Disorders
  • Retinitis
View all 4 Specialties +


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About Jonathan Sears, MD

Jonathan Sears, MD, is Associate Professor of Ophthalmology at the Cole Eye Institute, Cleveland Clinic. He received his undergraduate education at Yale College, graduating cum laude with a BS in chemistry. He continued with medical school at Yale University School of Medicine, where he developed a novel method of screening B-cell epitopes, which was used to help develop the Lyme vaccine. He was a Resident in Ophthalmology at Yale as well, and next completed a two-year surgical fellowship at Emory University, where he developed an interest in pediatric retinal detachment and retinopathy of prematurity (ROP).

Dr. Sears' research interest is in ROP. He uses a mouse model of ROP to test the hypothesis that small-molecule activators of hypoxia-inducible factor are able to drive retinal development early in life to prevent ROP detachment.

Education & Professional Highlights

Education & Professional Highlights


Education & Fellowships

Fellowship - Emory University Hospital
Vitreoretinal Fellowship
Decatur, GA USA

Residency - Yale-New Haven Hospital
New Haven, CT USA

Internship - Yale-New Haven Hospital
Internal Medicine
New Haven, CT USA

Medical School - Yale University School of Medicine
New Haven, CT USA

Undergraduate - Yale University
New Haven, CT USA

Professional Highlights

  • AAO Achievement Award
  • The Hartwell Foundation Research Fellow
  • Matilda Zeigler Foundation Research Fellow


  • Ophthalmology

Specialty Interests

retinal detachment secondary to degenerative disorders such as myopia or trauma or diabetes, retinopathy of prematurity and other acquired vitreoretinal diseases, vitreoretinal diseases, pediatric retina

Awards & Honors

  • Distinction in Chemistry, Department of Chemistry, Yale University, 1988$0$0Cum Laude, Yale University, 1988
  • Yale Medical Student Research Fellowship, sponsored by National Institutes of Health; Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Section of Immunobiology, Yale School of Medicine, 1990-1992
  • Harold J. Lamport Prize, awarded for the most creative biomedical research by a Yale medical student, Department of Biochemistry, Yale School of Medicine, 1992
  • Yale Resident Research Prize, Department of Ophthalmology, 1995 and 1996
  • Heed Ophthalmic Fellowship, in support of clinical research, 1997
  • Emory Medical Care Fellowship, in support of basic science research, Emory University School of Medicine, 1997
  • Association of University Professors of Ophthalmology, Fellow Research Competition, Finalist, 1998
  • Clinical Teacher of the Year Award, Department of Ophthalmology, Emory University School of Medicine, 1998
  • Clinical Investigator Development Award, Cleveland Clinic, 2003
  • Best Doctors in America, 2005-2009
  • Best Doctors in Cleveland, 2005-2009
  • American Academy of Ophthalmology Achievement Award, 2007
  • Editorial Board Member Online News and Education (O.N.E.), 2007
  • Editorial Board Member British Journal of Ophthalmology
  • Best Research, Poster American Academy of Ophthalmology, 2008
  • Strathmore Who's Who 2009

Innovations & Patents

  • Stimulating angiogenesis to prevent ischemic retinopathy


  • American Academy of Ophthalmology
  • Association of Research in Vision and Ophthalmology
  • International Congress of Eye Research
  • Association of Pediatric Retinal Surgeons
  • Cleveland Ophthalmic Society
  • Heed Ophthalmic Society$0$0
Research & Publications

Research & Publications

See publications for Jonathan Sears, MD.

(Disclaimer: This search is powered by PubMed, a service of the U.S. National Library of Medicine. PubMed is a third-party website with no affiliation with Cleveland Clinic.)

Industry Relationships

Industry Relationships

Cleveland Clinic physicians and scientists may collaborate with the pharmaceutical or medical device industries to help develop medical breakthroughs or provide medical expertise or education. Cleveland Clinic strives to make scientific advances that will benefit patient care and support outside relationships that promise public benefit. In order for the discoveries of Cleveland Clinic physicians' and scientists' laboratories and investigations to benefit the public, these discoveries must be commercialized in partnership with industry. As experts in their fields, Cleveland Clinic physicians and scientists are often sought after by industry to consult, provide expertise and education.

To assure professional and commercial integrity in such matters, Cleveland Clinic maintains a program that reviews these collaborations and, when appropriate, puts measures in place to minimize bias that may result from ties to industry. Cleveland Clinic publicly discloses the names of companies when (i) its physicians/scientists receive $5,000 or more per year (or, in rare cases, equity or stock options) for speaking and consulting, (ii) its physicians/scientists serve as a fiduciary, (iii) its physicians/scientists receive or have the right to receive royalties or (iv) its physicians/ scientists hold any equity interest for the physician's/scientist's role as inventor, discoverer, developer, founder or consultant.* In publicly disclosing this information, Cleveland Clinic tries to provide information as accurately as possible about its physicians' and scientists' connections with industry.

As of 9/27/2018, Dr. Sears has reported no financial relationship with industry that is applicable to this listing. In general, patients should feel free to contact their doctor about any of the relationships and how the relationships are overseen by Cleveland Clinic. To learn more about Cleveland Clinic's policies on collaborations with industry and innovation management, go to our Integrity in Innovation page.

Public Health Service-Reportable Financial Conflicts of Interest. Cleveland Clinic scientists and physicians engage in basic, translational and clinical research activities, working to solve health problems, enhance patient care and improve quality of life for patients. Interactions with industry are essential to bringing the researchers' discoveries to the public, but can present the potential for conflicts of interest related to their research activities. Click here to view a listing of instances where Cleveland Clinic has identified a Public Health Service (PHS)-Reportable Financial Conflict of Interest and has put measures in place to ensure that, to the extent possible, the design, conduct and reporting of the research is free from bias.

* Cleveland Clinic physicians and scientists subscribe to the guidance presented in the PhRMA Code on Interactions with Healthcare Professionals and the AdvaMed Code of Ethics on Interactions with Health Care Professionals. As such, gifts of substantial value are generally prohibited.

Patient Satisfaction Reviews

258 Patient Satisfaction Reviews

The Patient Satisfaction Rating is an average of all responses to the care provider related questions shown below from our nationally-recognized Press Ganey Patient Satisfaction Survey. Patients that are treated in outpatient or hospital environments may receive different surveys, and the volume of responses will vary by question.

Responses are measured on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the best score.

The comments are submitted by patients and reflect their views and opinions. The comments are not endorsed by and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cleveland Clinic.

Overall Star Ratings
4.8 out of 5
Explains 4.9
Listens 4.8
Courtesy, Respect & Concern 4.9
Knows Medical History 4.8
Time Spent with Patient 4.8
Patient Rating of Doctor 4.8

26 Patient Comments

Reviewed on Oct 11, 2018

Dr. Sears and his is staff work diligently to ensure each patient gets the attention they need. Keep up that great work.

Reviewed on Aug 21, 2018

the doctor did not end our appointment just got up and left me in the room wondering if I was finished with the appointment.

Reviewed on Aug 16, 2018

Great experience with Dr.Sears

Reviewed on Aug 14, 2018

Dr. Sears is a world-class physician. I would recommend him to anyone.

Reviewed on Aug 7, 2018

Typically a great experience. During this visit Dr. Sears was behind schedule and seemed to be in a hurry and distracted. However, took sufficient time with us.

Reviewed on Aug 7, 2018

I'm very grateful for the treatment I've received at such a reputable hospital. My vision has been saved thanks to Dr. Sears and the staff at the Cleveland Clinic.

Reviewed on Jun 26, 2018

Ultimately what matters to me is results. I believe Dr. Sears saved the eyesight in my right eye. I began to see him when adverse symptoms were beginning to appear. I recommend him and the entire Clinic whenever anyone expresses a need to me.

Reviewed on Jun 19, 2018

I have referred others to Dr Sears because he is astute and appears to care for you as the patient.

Reviewed on May 29, 2018

Doctor Sears has been for me undoubtedly the best possible care provider for my eye issues. Not only for his expertise and abilities, which I can attest to after more than thirty years of seeing different doctors for my eye problems, but also for the human connection that I feel as a patient. I will definitely miss him now that I have to move, and will consider a trip to Cleveland just to see him.

Reviewed on May 15, 2018

friendly brainy guy who was a delight to be seen by such a caring doctor

Reviewed on May 3, 2018

always a long wait because our doctor is very busy and in demand.

Reviewed on Apr 24, 2018

Dr Scear's FIRST concern was what is best for me. Options and reasons for each were explained and easy to understand.

Reviewed on Apr 17, 2018

Dr. Sears also uses extraordinary care when seeing me. Very understanding during difficult diagnoses.

Reviewed on Apr 16, 2018

Dr. sears was great. the facilities were overcrowded. Finding a seat was difficult. the appt. took over three hours. that's enough to make me go elsewhere.

Reviewed on Apr 10, 2018

Dr. Sears can't be beat! Great experience

Reviewed on Apr 10, 2018

Though there are some wait times, the quality of care, expertise of the physicians and staff, as well as the other available services, really makes Cleveland Clinic the best for me and my son; recently Dr. Cline was able to determine the cause of my son's GI problem, which he has been undiagnosed for years, and he is really determined to see him through. I cannot be more grateful - Thank you for everything.

Reviewed on Apr 10, 2018

*Dr. Sears is a true professional and top-notch person would recommended him to anyone with a need to see a retinal specialist.

Reviewed on Apr 5, 2018

Very good experience Dr. Sears administered great care to both my wife and myself in a very timely fashion.

Reviewed on Mar 13, 2018

I liked and trusted Dr. Sears immediately.

Reviewed on Mar 1, 2018

Dr. Sears is excellent. Very supportive and encouraging regarding my eye condition.

Reviewed on Jan 30, 2018

I don't feel like we got a clear diagnosis of the problem. We did heart that from the doctor's perspective, the symptoms my son is experiencing are not 'likely' a problem.

Reviewed on Jan 16, 2018

Dr. Sears is a very caring, professional doctor. He has been a great help to me with my eye problem.

Reviewed on Jan 16, 2018

Dr. Sears is technically very strong. What makes the monthly appointments more tolerable (since the appointment ends with someone inserting a needle in my eye) is Dr. Sears personality. He shows genuine interest and concern for my well being - and as a person. He also asks for my input when circumstances warrant.

Reviewed on Dec 21, 2017

I also was given information about my vision and glasses prescription. this was also very much appreciated. But the diagnosis that I do not have age-related macular degeneration was the best!

Reviewed on Dec 21, 2017

This person also suggested that I request to be transported back to the parking garage via shuttle when my appointment was concluded. I had walked, it was a cold,windy morning. I found this very considerate. Thanks!

Reviewed on Nov 21, 2017

Dr. Sears has gone above and beyond what we ever could have expected from a care provider for our daughter! Him and his entire staff are excellent!

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