Member Profile: Dr. Matthew Sharpe & team are restoring Bellevue’s vision, one procedure at a time
Dr. Matthew Sharpe, founder and medical director for SharpeVision Modern LASIK & Lens, is one of the Bellevue Chamber’s newest board members.
Hailing from Columbus, Ohio — “the second of three sons who all needed glasses,” — Dr. Sharpe has established an impressive career and practice for himself since graduating medical school in 1992.
Let’s get to know Dr. Sharpe.
Q: What inspired you to pursue a career in LASIK and vision correction?
A: “When I was 7 years old, my vision blurred, and I became dependent on increasingly thick glasses to function. I wore painful hard contacts, had especially ugly sports glasses, and even had glasses at the edge of the pool for the swim team … I once traveled through Europe for 6 weeks after college without removing my contacts once. Every aspect of my young life was influenced by my poor vision, and I was envious of those who had perfect vision.”
Q: Tell me a bit about your educational background and how it prepared you for your entrepreneurial-meets-medical profession.
A: “In medical school at Ohio State, I immediately knew that ophthalmology was a perfect fit for me. It combined all the things I loved: Biology, physics, optics, innovation, technology, and surgery. Because of my own vision problems, I was obsessed with finding a way to improve vision for everyone. Later as a resident eye surgeon, laser vision correction was just a concept, but was approved by the US FDA just as I finished my ophthalmology residency. What perfect timing! I had LASIK on my own -8 (VERY nearsighted) eyes in 1998.”
Q: Since LASIK is a relatively new procedure, how have you been able to hone in and become an expert on it?
A: “I performed over 56,000 LASIK surgeries working for a corporate LASIK provider, two years of which were in downtown Bellevue. In 2012, my wife and I returned to Bellevue to open SharpeVision near Overlake Hospital, and we are now expanding and moving to our amazing new state of the art Refractive Eye Center at 3025 112th Ave. next to the original Microsoft building. From there, we will have an ASC (Ambulatory Surgery Center) where we will perform laser assisted cataract surgery with 3D monitors, multifocal IOL implants, and every advanced refractive surgery technique.”
Q: So, what will your new Bellevue center be like?
A: “Our new Bellevue center is an amazing dream come to life … It combines our merged Bellevue LASIK and Cataract practice, our SharpeVision MODERN LASIK & Lens, and a much needed 15,000 square foot eye surgery center, all in the corporate campus east building at 3025 112th Ave. NE near 520. We are also creating a gorgeous patient experience combined with a dream team of surgeons, optometrists, and support team.”
Q: What drew you to Bellevue?
A: “I had worked here in the early 2000’s and just fell in love with the PNW. I took my kids on hikes, swam in Lake Washington, and discovered the museums and sights that we all love here in this beautiful part of the United States. I also knew the industry, and believed that Bellevue needed my services.”
Q: Would you recommend LASIK for your own family?
A: I not only would, but have performed LASIK on my daughter, EVO ICL on my son, and PRK on my mom and wife. I personally had LASIK in 1998 and have enjoyed it every day since.