Newcastle Eye Centre


We offer this specialist genetics service and use bespoke electrophysiology facilities. Patients come to us from across the North of England.

Retinal genetics and ocular electrophysiology

We are one of a small number of centres in the UK to offer a comprehensive local and regional service for adult patients with retinal genetic conditions. We have the latest equipment and expertise to investigate, diagnose and monitor a wide range of retinal conditions such as:

  • Retinitis pigmentosa
  • Stargardt’s disease
  • Best’s disease
  • Late onset retinal degeneration.

What does the service provide?

We conduct a fortnightly retinal genetics clinic in association with the Northern Regional Genetics service from the Centre for Life. As well as diagnosing and monitoring conditions, this clinic also offers genetic counselling to patients and their families.

An integral part of the clinic is the Clinical Electrophysiology service based in the hospital’s Medical Physics department, where electrical recordings are taken from the retina and optic nerves under different lighting conditions. This allows the clinicians to determine exactly which cells in the eye are affected thereby helping with the diagnosis, and to accurately monitor the condition.

Newcastle is one of the few centres in the UK able to perform these investigations from newborn babies through to adults. Although genetic eye conditions are currently untreatable, the department has links with colleagues in other parts of the country where research into various conditions and potential treatments including gene therapy is taking place.

We are involved in leading-edge research

The clinic is currently undertaking research into a local genetic eye condition called Late-onset Retinal Degeneration. The aim is to better understand the long-term prognosis (outcomes) of the condition and to work out the underlying mechanism of the disease. Some aspects of this research are conducted in association with our colleagues in the retinal genetics clinic in Edinburgh.

Who runs the service?

  • Consultant – Andrew Browning
  • Genetic councillor – Sharon McDonnell
  • Head of ocular electrophysiology – Karen Bradshaw

For queries or more information, please contact Mr Andrew Browning on 0191 282 0474.

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