Cecilia Lee, MD, MS

Professor; Klorfine Family Endowed Chair; Director of Clinical Research


Undergraduate Education: BS, Emory University, 2004
Graduate Education: Masters of Science in Epidemiology at UW School of Public Health
Medical School: MD, Emory University School of Medicine, 2008
Post Graduate Education:
Transitional, Emory University, 2009
Residency: Ophthalmology, Emory University, 2012
Fellowships: Uveitis, Washington University in St. Louis, 2013
Medical Retina, Moorfields Eye Hospital, 2014  
Board Certification: American Board of Ophthalmology (ABO)                                             

Membership: American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO)
Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO)
Washington Academy of Eye Physicians and Surgeons (WAEPS)

Subspecialty memberships:    
American Uveitis Society (AUS), American Society of Retina Specialists (ASRS), The Macula Society, Ocular Microbiology and Immunology Group (OMIG)


Dr. Lee was born in South Korea and raised in both Seoul, Korea and Buenos Aires, Argentina. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Emory University in Biology. She remained at Emory University for her MD degree and completed her internship and ophthalmology residency working at various hospitals, including Grady Memorial Hospital, Emory University Hospital, and Atlanta Veterans Affairs Hospital. After her residency training, she completed a uveitis fellowship at Barnes-Jewish Hospital/Washington University in St. Louis, and medical retina fellowship at Moorfields Eye Hospital, London, UK.

Dr. Lee joined the UW faculty in 2014. She is a clinician scientist, and her time is divided into seeing patients with retinal conditions, performing cataract extractions, teaching, and pursuing her research in medical retina and uveitis.

Dr. Lee offers medical treatments for vitreoretinal diseases and performs cataract surgeries. She enjoys being actively involved in clinical research and teaching residents. She is dedicated to educating her patients with the most current information and offering diverse treatment options.

Having grown up in Buenos Aires, Dr. Lee enjoys Latin American culture and is delighted to see Spanish-speaking patients in her clinic. Her pastimes include traveling, hiking, Crossfit, music, and pottery. 

Primary office

Karalis Johnson Retina Center at South Lake Union
750 Republican St., Building F
Seattle, WA 98109

Patient Care Philosophy

"I love participating in my patients’ healthcare by providing personalized, up-to-date medical care. I enjoy translating next-generation research tools in medical retina to the clinic and providing deeper insights into each patient’s care.“

Awards and honors

2000-04 Callaway Scholar

2003-04 Phi Beta Kappa

2004-08 Mary W. Rautenbusch Scholar

2012 National Eye Institute Travel Grant

2013 Golden Apple Award “Best Fellow Teacher Award” Washington University    

Research focus

Dr. Lee's research interests focus on finding the connections between the eye and the brain using non-invasive imaging, Big Data and advanced computational approaches. Dr. Lee aspires to take advantage of increasingly complex and massive amounts of ophthalmic clinical data to better understand blinding eye diseases, discover new ophthalmic biomarkers of brain disease, and translate the research findings into providing better care for the patients. 


Aaron and Cecilia Lee collaborate on the mining of large clinical data sets and registries from around the world and unlocking the power of Big Data through recent breakthroughs in machine learning and artificial intelligence. Major research focuses include bioinformatics, deep learning, next-generation sequencing, clinical epidemiology, and data visualization. Recently published work includes clinical outcomes research in age-related macular degeneration and diabetic retinopathy. Visit their website below.



    No publications are available at this time.

UW Department of Ophthalmology

908 Jefferson St.. Seattle, WA 98104 (academic offices)
Harborview Medical Center (mailing address)
Box 359608, 325 Ninth Avenue Seattle, WA 98104
Phone: 206.543.7250
Fax: 206.685.7055


For Patients

Graduate Medical Education