Eye surgeon Dr William Cunningham
Eye surgeon Dr William Cunningham
Eye surgeon Dr William Cunningham
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Dr William Cunningham

Specialist Eye Surgeon


About Dr William Cunningham

Dr Cunningham is a highly trained ophthalmic surgeon who specialises in vitreoretinal surgery (surgery at the back of the eye), cataract surgery, and medical retinal diseases. Dr Cunningham's international training has allowed him to become familiar with the latest technologies and techniques in the management of most ophthalmic conditions.

Dr Cunningham’s specialisms

  • Cataract Surgery
    Dr Cunningham's modern cataract surgery techniques ensure that patients experience a relaxed, pain free operation with rapid recovery of vision. Dr Cunningham commonly uses:
    • No needle anaesthesia (safe for patients on aspirin and warfarin)
    • No pain (numbing anaesthetic gel)
    • No sutures ("key-hole" small incision surgery)
    • No eye patch (useful vision through a clear protective shield returns in minutes)
    • No worries – sedation provided by a specialist anaesthetist, if you desire
  • Vitreoretinal Surgery
    Dr Cunningham's national and international vitreoretinal training has allowed him to become an expert in this area. Dr Cunningham is familiar with the most advanced technologies in vitreoretinal surgery, including using the smallest 25 and 27 gauge "sutureless" vitrectomy instruments, revolutionary wide-angled retinal viewing systems, and he is able to perform most surgeries under local anaesthetic. All of these techniques allow for a quick, safe, pain-free operation with a faster postoperative recovery.
  • Dr Cunningham is referred patients by other eye surgeons who have had problems during cataract surgery, or if a cataract operation is more likely to be complicated.
  • Dr Cunningham can treat the following conditions:

Dr Cunningham's background

Dr Cunningham is a kiwi born ophthalmologist who grew up in a small rural town northwest of Auckland. He was awarded a combined academic/sporting scholarship (Herbie Towers Academic Boarding Scholarship and Coca-Cola sporting scholarship) to attend secondary school at Mt Albert Grammar in Auckland city.

In 2005 he graduated medical school at the University of Auckland where he received the top prize for Ophthalmology (Calvin Ring Prize in Ophthalmology) and the top prize for Surgery (Sir Carrick Robertson prize for surgery).

Dr Cunningham’s training & experience

Dr Cunningham completed a one year academic/clinical fellowship at the University of Auckland before commencing Ophthalmology specialty training in New Zealand. After becoming a Fellow of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Ophthalmologists (FRANZCO), Dr Cunningham went on to complete an extra two years of vitreoretinal subspecialty training. His first year was spent at Waikato Hospital, Hamilton, New Zealand, and the second year at the world renowned Lions Eye Institute and Royal Perth Hospital, Perth, Australia.

During his training Dr Cunningham completed thousands of cataract procedures and over 600 vitreoretinal procedures, ranging from simple procedures such as routine retinal detachments, macular holes or epiretinal membranes, to more complex cases such as diabetic retinopathy, severe trauma and complex retinal detachment surgeries.

Dr Cunningham has been involved in research throughout his training, submitting five papers to peer reviewed journals, and presenting at multiple conferences and meetings.

He currently spends most of his time working as a consultant at the Greenlane Clinical Centre. He is actively involved in teaching medical students, registrars and optometrists.

In 2017 he will take a six month hiatus to complete a third fellowship in the UK, where he will become the second person in the North Island with subspecialty training in ocular oncology.

Dr Cunningham’s family & personal interests

Outside of work Dr Cunningham enjoys spending quality time with his wife and son. Prior to embarking on his medical career he was a representative rugby player for North Harbour and Auckland from the age of 10 through to 21 years old.

He remains fit and active since retiring from contact sport, and many patients still ask if he is a rugby player. His response is that heavy contact sports and fine microsurgery aren't very compatible!

He has always had a passion for music, and still enjoys playing the guitar and drums when he has time.

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