Recently, QEI Clinic’s Professor Ravi Thomas took some time out of his busy schedule to answer a few questions about his personal interests and career highlights so far.
What interested you in ophthalmology?
My parents were both ophthalmologists – some of the first qualified in India in the late 1940’s. Rather than going to a big city, they elected to work in a small village in central India. There was not much to do in that village, so I spent my holidays from boarding school located in the mountains (Himalayas) at the clinic. I often sat in when Dad and Mom saw patients. Watched my first eye surgery at eight years of age, I think. I did medicine to do ophthalmology. I must say that I wavered twice during my MBBS course: I found forensics very interesting as well as the decision making process in obstetrics, but ophthalmology remained. I took up glaucoma and paediatric ophthalmology as I had really good teachers in both those areas during my MD Ophthalmology in Delhi. Incidentally my mother assisted me with my first cataract surgery and my first glaucoma surgery.
What interested you in working with the Queensland Eye Institute?
I was between jobs in India in 2008 when I got a call from Professor Hirst. He said QEI were looking for an academic glaucoma specialist and had heard I was available. He then got us over for an interview in Brisbane, offered me the job and arranged for us to move.
What has been your career highlight to date?
Some of my career highlights include:
What research areas are you interested in?
Glaucoma mainly: I have done most of this work in Primary Angle Closure Disease. I like Clinical Epidemiology. I prefer Bayesian Statistics over conventional statistics in publications.
What do you like to do in your free time?
I used to practice martial arts and still do a bit of it – I’m not in full training though. I also like to spend time with the family, work on publications, play the harmonica, read and watch movies – Bollywood like Hollywood has a lot to offer.
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