Cornea Specialist Alireza Ghaffarieh, M.D., Joins UAMS Jones Eye Institute

By Karmen Robinson

Ghaffarieh is currently accepting new patients and will serve as an assistant professor and director of ophthalmic pathology services in the UAMS College of Medicine Department of Ophthalmology.

“We are excited to welcome Dr. Ghaffarieh to our JEI team at UAMS. He brings a variety of expertise and extensive training as a physician and researcher that will help treat our patients, educate students and train residents using the latest medical technology and procedures,” said Paul Phillips, M.D., institute director and chair of the Department of Ophthalmology.

Ghaffarieh specializes in corneal transplants, refractive surgery, cataract surgery and external eye diseases with a primary interest in translational ophthalmic research.

“I am excited to join the Jones Eye Institute at UAMS,” he said. “The institute has already established an excellent reputation in the state and region, and I appreciate the opportunity to continue building from its success while also training our future health care professionals and researchers.”

Ghaffarieh comes to UAMS after most recently serving as an advanced cornea fellow at Massachusetts Eye and Ear, home to the world’s largest vision and hearing research centers and a teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School in Boston.

A native of Azerbaijan, Ghaffarieh graduated in the top 1% of his class from Shiraz University and earned his medical degree in 1996.

After completing his ophthalmology residency at Shiraz University in 2002, Ghaffarieh chaired the ophthalmology departments at Fasa University of Medical Sciences from 2002-2005 and Kowsar Hospital from 2006-2011. He also served as a senior consulting ophthalmologist at Khodadoust Eye Hospital from 2007-2011.

Ghaffarieh received additional training in keratoprosthetic surgery at Fyodorov Eye Institute and visual rehabilitation at Krasnov Center, both located in Moscow.

Additionally, Ghaffarieh completed an anatomic pathology residency at Indiana University in 2018 as well as three research fellowships in neuro-ophthalmology (2013), ocular pathology (2014) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and cytopathology at the University of Southern California (2019).

Along with 25 years of medical experience, Ghaffarieh has multiple affiliations as a researcher and scientist working in various biomechanical engineering departments and institutes.

He has authored 40 journal articles and three book chapters, in addition to serving on the editorial board and as a reviewer for several ophthalmology journals. He also holds one full and five provisional U.S. patents.

Ghaffarieh is fluent in English, Azerbaijani, Persian, Turkish and Arabic.

UAMS is the state's only health sciences university, with colleges of Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, Health Professions and Public Health; a graduate school; a hospital; a main campus in Little Rock; a Northwest Arkansas regional campus in Fayetteville; a statewide network of regional campuses; and seven institutes: the Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute, Jackson T. Stephens Spine & Neurosciences Institute, Harvey & Bernice Jones Eye Institute, Psychiatric Research Institute, Donald W. Reynolds Institute on Aging, Translational Research Institute and Institute for Digital Health & Innovation. UAMS includes UAMS Health, a statewide health system that encompasses all of UAMS' clinical enterprise. UAMS is the only adult Level 1 trauma center in the state. UAMS has 3,275 students, 890 medical residents and fellows, and five dental residents. It is the state's largest public employer with more than 12,000 employees, including 1,200 physicians who provide care to patients at UAMS, its regional campuses, Arkansas Children's, the VA Medical Center and Baptist Health. Visit or Find us on Facebook, X (formerly Twitter), YouTube or Instagram.