Meet Dr. John Berdahl
Practicing in Sioux Falls, SD is our board-certified ophthalmologist, John Berdahl, MD. He is widely regarded as one of the leading international cataract surgeons. He is one of the very few surgeons in the United States who is also fellowship trained in cornea, glaucoma, and refractive surgery. Dr. Berdahl has already performed more than 35,000 eye surgeries around the globe. His published work has primarily focused on the fundamental causes of Glaucoma, Minimally Invasive Glaucoma Surgery, and Astigmatism Management, during and after cataract surgery.
He has been involved in numerous FDA monitored clinical trials on some of the most exciting technologies in ophthalmology. He also founded Equinox, which is developing the first non-surgical, non-pharmacologic way to lower eye pressure for glaucoma treatment. He co-invented the MKO melt, which provides sedation during cataract surgery without the use of an IV. Additionally, he created astigmatismfix.com which helps thousands of surgeons per month fix residual astigmatism after cataract surgery. Finally, in an effort to improve access to care, he co-founded ExpertOpinion.MD which provides online opinions to patients from top doctors around the world.
Although Dr. Berdahl has many accomplishments, his primary driver is the trust that people place in him, particularly meeting his patients in their moments of vulnerability and putting their needs first. His commitment to the underserved is demonstrated by his leadership in EyeCare America, as well as in the Mission Vision program at Vance Thompson Vision, where he performs dozens of free surgeries every year. Dr. Berdahl also continues to serve the impoverished on mission trips world-wide.
His CV can be accessed here:
Education & Training
- High School - Hills-Beaver Creek High School, Hills, MN
- College - Augustana College, Sioux Falls, SD (Major - Physics; Minors - Chemistry and Biology)
- Medical School - Mayo Medical School, Rochester, MN
- Internship - Mayo Clinic, Scottsdale, AZ
- Residency - Duke University, Durham, NC
- Fellowship - Minnesota Eye Consultants, Minneapolis, MN
Selected Honors & Awards
In addition to over 45 peer-reviewed articles, over 35 book chapters, hundreds of presentations at national and international meetings and participation in 37 FDA clinical trials, some of Dr. Berdahl's notable accomplishments are listed below:
- 2018 Top 100 Most Influential People in Ophthalmology Worldwide – The Ophthalmologist
- 2018 Teacher of the Year – Sanford School of Medicine – Transitional Year Residents
- 2018 Speaker of the Day – Royal Hawaiian Eye Meeting
- 2017 #3 Ophthalmologist under 50 Worldwide – The Ophthalmologist
- 2016 One of 100 Entrepreneurs invited to The US President’s Global Entrepreneurship Summit – Stanford University
- 2016 NASA/NSBRI Grant – Safety of Pressure Manipulation around Eye
- 2016 ASCRS Innovators Lecture
- 2015 Member of the Vision for Mars Team NASA/NSBRI
- 2015 Best of Best Papers ASCRS 2015 ASCRS Sclerally Fixated Akreos Lens
- 2015 Top 40 Ophthalmologists under 40, The Ophthalmologist, World Wide Award
- 2015 Top 40 Business People under 40, Dakota Business News, Midwest Award
- 2013 American Academy of Ophthalmology Achievement Award
- 2013 #1 Young Outstanding Physician South Dakota State Medical Association
- 2011 Horizon Award (Most Accomplished Young Alumnus) Augustana College
- 2010 Vanguard Ophthalmology Society Founding Member & President
- 2008 Claes Dohlman Award (Most Outstanding Cornea Fellow), National Award – Harvard University
- 2008 Robert Machemer Research Award, Duke University
- 2008 Resident Teacher of the Year, Duke University
- 2008 Edward Isbey III, Resident of the Year Award, Duke University
- 2007 Ophthalmology Times Resident Writer’s Award First Place, Ophthalmology Times
Skills & Expertise
At Vance Thompson Vision, Dr. Berdahl is exceptionally skilled at diagnosing and deciphering a proper treatment for varying stages of glaucoma, corneal diseases, and cataracts. He is also a meticulous refractive surgeon. Should surgery be recommended, Dr. Berdahl is equipped to employ the most innovative and tested techniques available to effectively treat most diseases of the anterior segment (front part of the eye).
Hobbies & Personal Interests
Dr. Berdahl lives in Sioux Falls, SD and is a devoted husband to wife Tamme and is a dedicated father to his son Tommy and his daughter Anabel. As a family, their interests range from outdoor activities such as watersports, hunting, scuba diving, astronomy, and athletics to playing the guitar, cooking, and community involvement. Dr. Berdahl is an avid reader and writer, and enjoys doing both during his free time.
"I had PRK eye surgery with Dr. Berdahl years ago. I had VERY bad eyesight & he was extremely kind & caring in helping us decide the best surgery choice for my eyesight. We also did research & he would talk with us answering questions; very patient doctor who makes patients feel like they are his ONLY patient. The surgery was MORE successful than anticipated & 7 years later still get by with readers! We took our adult son there for lasik surgery - he is the best!! Also referred a friend!"
"As an eye surgeon I didn't consider any other place to have my eye surgery than at Vance Thompson Vision. I have known Dr. Thompson and his fellow surgeons and employees for nearly 30 years. They epitomize the concept of team approach to service and perform it better than any other place. It was a pleasure to experience their service first hand. Friendliness and caring from the moment you walk in. Expedited service where your personal team technician takes you from the waiting room (after a very short wait) and performs all the testing required for the surgeon and optometrist to analyze the problems and present the solutions. Dr. Berdahl is internationally famous and for good reason. He is knowledgeable and skillful. I did not feel a thing and my results so far are better than expected. They treat their employees and patients exceptionally well and it shows. It was well worth the trip from Utah."
"As an eye surgeon, I made the decision to travel from Utah to Sioux Falls to have Dr. John Berdahl perform my surgery. I was able to experience their famous team approached to patient service and care. Amazing! Such nice and caring people who are so skilled at what they do and sincerely care about people and patients. My results so far are better than anticipated! These are the leaders in the country on customer service and treating employees and patients exceptionally well! Isn't this what doctoring is all about or should be?? Kudos VTV!"
"Had a very good experience with him. I highly recommend him"
"Without doubt, my complete experience at Vance Thompson Vision has been above and beyond compare. Every single person with whom I had contact was totally awesome - from the moment I called requesting an appointment through my departure from day-after-surgery check up. Sarah, Steph, Stephanie, Aimee, Dr. Ibach, Dr. Berdahl, Gideon, Chris, Becky, Jeremy . . . and just everyone! What an amazingly gracious team you have on board.Thank you for all the smiles, delightful communications, for uplifting my spirits, and giving me hope. I loved the surgery serenade, Dr. Berdahl and Surgical Team. Jeremy, I'm excited about staying in touch and learning everything possible about the Equinox study. Couldn't be more exciting news for the glaucoma crowd Go Team!Warmly,Jeanne Deller"
We're celebrating Dr. Berdahl's 10th Vanceversary!
This week we celebrate Dr. John Berdahl's 10th Vanceversary.Read
Interview with Dr. Berdahl: All About Refractive Surgery
Dr. Berdahl discusses Refractive Surgery on KELOLAND Living.Read
How to Maintain Your Corneal Health
Dr. John Berdahl, MD, met with Gary WeckWerth from KeloLand Living to discuss the cornea and how to maintain your corneal health.Read
Frequently asked questions about cataract conditions.Read