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Dr. Damien Gietzen, OD, FPIVR

Dr. Gietzen joined Great Lakes Vision Rehabilitation at Excel in 2021! He has a clinical interest in traumatic and acquired brain injuries, neuro-degenerative disorders, and visual midline shift syndrome. 

Dr. Gietzen is a Fellow of the Padula Institute of Vision Rehabilitation. 

My Story

Dr. Damien Gietzen was born in metro Detroit and attended Wayne State University earning a bachelor’s degree in Health Sciences.  He then attended the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences (MCPHS) where he graduated in 2020 while earning both Beta Sigma Kappa and Phi Kappa Phi fraternal honors.  During his training, he held roles as both an optometric tutor for underclassman as well as holding the treasurer position for the Student Volunteer Optometric Services to Humanity (SVOSH) group who provided optometric services to those in need living in MCPHS’s hometown of Worcester, MA.  

Upon graduation, Dr. Gietzen was selected for the National Institute of Health funded RJ Apell / C Nelson Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation Fellowship program at the Padula Institute of Vision Rehabilitation in Guilford, CT.  The fellowship emphasized clinical experience neuro-optometric treatment of visual spatial processing dysfunction including, but not limited to, traumatic/acquired brain injury, Lyme disease, post-trauma vision syndrome, visual midline shift syndrome, strabismus, amblyopia, neuro-atypical disorders (e.g., autism, cerebral palsy), neuro-degenerative disorders (e.g., Parkinson’s disease).  In addition to clinical care, Dr. Gietzen also was involved in technological creation and development as well as performing research as the principal investigator, for which he is in the stages of completing currently.  The research looks to correlate the electrodiagnostic changes found on the visual evoked potential in post-trauma vision syndrome with the visuospatial deficits found on the Complex Rey Figure Test in the same population.  He completed the fellowship program earning the FPIVR distinction in summer of 2021.

Dr. Gietzen recently moved back to Michigan to join GLVR at Excel est. 2004 (Excel Neuro-Optometric Clinic).  Since joining the practice, he has begun the fellowship process for the Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation Association (NORA). The fellowship is a post-doctoral program that requires clinical experience, case reports, and research to be completed in the field of neuro-optometric care and is a commitment to providing the highest level of care to patients.  He is also currently working with the World Health Organization’s Myopia task force, in developing innovative ways to combat the world myopia epidemic.  He is also excited to work side by side with Dr. Nichols and will be looking forward to pursuing future research in the neuro-optometric field.

In his spare time, Dr. Gietzen enjoys hiking, backpacking, kayaking, biking, playing board games, and spending time with his wife, son, family, and friends.  He is excited to be back in his hometown and looks hopes to provide the best care possible for years to come.

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