Resident Alumni
Fellow Alumni


Elmer Tu, MD

Joel Sugar, MD Professor in Ophthalmology; Professor of Clinical Ophthalmology; Director, Cornea Service
Work Mailing Address: Illinois Eye and Ear Infirmary 1855 W. Taylor Street, M/C 648 Chicago IL 60612
Photo of Elmer Tu MD

Biographical Info

Elmer Tu, MD with a grateful patientSees patients at:

Specialty Care Building (SCB)
Cornea Service
1009 S. Wood St.
Chicago, IL 60612

Schedule an Appointment

“I am so happy Dr. Tu was able to figure out what was wrong with my eye!” comment from


Infectious diseases of the cornea form the core of Dr. Tu’s clinical and research interests.  Widely viewed as having special expertise in the diagnosis and treatment of Acanthamoeba and other severe infections of the cornea, Dr. Tu and colleague Dr. Charlotte Joslin were the first to identify and study the statistically significant increase in Acanthamoeba keratitis in the United States. They established an association between a specific contact lens solution and Acanthamoeba outbreak and also theorized that an environmental change related to water supply standards may be responsible for the persistence of its increased incidence. Dr. Tu’s area of expertise also includes new and innovative forms of corneal transplantation and treatment of challenging ocular surface disorders. He is on numerous national and international committees and is a member of the Board of Directors of the Cornea Society. He joined the Illinois Eye and Ear Infirmary faculty in 1999.  Dr. Tu is board certified in ophthalmology.



Elmer Y. Tu online at            Best Doctors logo                Outstanding Care Physician logo




BS—University of Miami, elected to Phi Beta Kappa
MD with Honors—University of Miami School of Medicine; elected to Alpha Omega Alpha
Residency—University of Wisconsin School of Medicine
Clinical Fellowship in Corneal and External Diseases—Bascom Palmer Eye Institute, Miami

Selected Honors and Awards

Chicago Super Doctors, 2012, 2013
Best Doctors in America, 1999, 2002 – present
Guide to America’s Top Ophthalmologists, 2002 – present
American Academy of Ophthalmology Achievement Award, 2010
American Academy of Ophthalmology Secretariat Award, 2009, 2015

See a representative list of Dr. Tu’s published journal articles on PubMed.

Recent Publications

Dikopf MS, Chow CC, Mieler WF, Tu EY. Cataract extraction outcomes and the prevalence of zonular insufficiency in retinitis pigmentosa. Am J Ophthalmol. 2013 Jul;156(1):82-88.e2. doi: 10.1016/j.ajo.2013.02.002. Epub 2013 Apr 28. PubMed PMID: 23628349.

Tu EY, Shoff ME, Gao W, Joslin CE. Effect of low concentrations of benzalkonium chloride on acanthamoebal survival and its potential impact on empirical therapy of infectious keratitis. JAMA Ophthalmol. 2013 May;131(5):595-600.  doi: 10.1001/ jamaophthalmol.2013.1644. PubMed PMID: 23519403.

Tu EY, Jain S. Topical linezolid 0.2% for the treatment of vancomycin-resistant or vancomycin-intolerant gram-positive bacterial keratitis. Am J Ophthalmol. 2013 Jun;155(6):1095-1098.e1. doi: 10.1016/j.ajo.2013.01.010.
Epub 2013 Feb 26. PubMed PMID: 23453280.

Schultz KL, Vajaranant TS, Suhr K, Wilensky JT, Tu EY. Surgical technique for  excisional bleb revision using a rotational conjunctival flap for a large conjunctival defect. Middle East Afr J Ophthalmol. 2013 Jan-Mar;20(1):98-101. doi: 10.4103/0974-9233.106409. PubMed PMID: 23580864; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3617541.

See CW, Srinivasan M, Saravanan S, Oldenburg CE, Esterberg EJ, Ray KJ, Glaser TS, Tu EY, Zegans ME, McLeod SD, Acharya NR, Lietman TM. Prior elicitation and Bayesian analysis of the Steroids for Corneal Ulcers Trial. Ophthalmic Epidemiol. 2012 Dec;19(6):407-13. doi: 10.3109/09286586.2012.735332. PubMed PMID: 23171211.

Aldave AJ, DeMatteo J, Glasser DB, Tu EY, Iliakis B, Nordlund ML, Misko J, Verdier DD, Yu F. Report of the Eye Bank Association of America medical advisory board subcommittee on fungal infection after corneal transplantation. Cornea. 2013 Feb;32(2):149-54. doi: 10.1097/ICO.0b013e31825e83bf. PubMed PMID: 23051906.

Olson EA, Tu EY, Basti S. Stromal rejection following deep anterior lamellar keratoplasty: implications for postoperative care. Cornea. 2012 Sep;31(9):969-73. doi: 10.1097/ICO.0b013e31823f8a99. PubMed PMID: 22677636.

Tu EY, Joslin CE. Microsporidia and Acanthamoeba: the role of emerging corneal pathogens. Eye (Lond). 2012 Feb;26(2):222-7. doi: 10.1038/eye.2011.315. Epub 2011 Dec 16. PubMed PMID: 22173072; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3272212.

Oldenburg CE, Acharya NR, Tu EY, Zegans ME, Mannis MJ, Gaynor BD, Whitcher JP, Lietman TM, Keenan JD. Practice patterns and opinions in the treatment of acanthamoeba keratitis. Cornea. 2011 Dec;30(12):1363-8. doi: 10.1097/ICO.0b013e31820f7763. PubMed PMID: 21993459; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3219806.

Pham M, Chow CC, Badawi D, Tu EY. Use of infliximab in the treatment of peripheral ulcerative keratitis in Crohn disease. Am J Ophthalmol. 2011 Aug;152(2):183-188.e2. doi: 10.1016/j.ajo.2011.01.059. Epub 2011 Jun 8. PubMed PMID: 21652024.

Tu EY, Joslin CE. Recent outbreaks of atypical contact lens-related keratitis: what have we learned? Am J Ophthalmol. 2010 Nov;150(5):602-608.e2. doi: 10.1016/j.ajo.2010.06.045. PubMed PMID: 21036209; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2991148.


Categories: Ophthalmology


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