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David G. Hwang


Cornea and refractive surgery specialist
Blessed and joyful husband and dad

Dr. David Hwang is an ophthalmologist specializing in corneal, cataract and refractive surgery. He has special interests in ocular infectious diseases, corneal endothelial dystrophies and diseases (conditions in which one of the cornea's layers is breaking down), and high-risk corneal transplantation. He is committed to developing innovative techniques and instruments for ophthalmologic surgery.

In research, Hwang's work includes translational endeavors – applying new information from studies to patient care – for corneal endothelial diseases. In particular, he has looked at cellular transplantation and gene therapy approaches to treatment.

A native of Illinois, Hwang obtained both his undergraduate and medical degrees from UCSF, graduating first in his medical school class. After a two-year residency in internal medicine and a three-year residency in ophthalmology, both at UCSF, he completed concurrent fellowships in cornea and refractive surgery and in uveitis at the Doheny Eye Institute.

In 1990, Hwang joined the faculty at UCSF, where he is the Pearl T. Kimura and Samuel J. Kimura Endowed Chair in Ophthalmology. He also serves as co-director of UCSF's cornea and refractive surgery services, and holds a joint appointment as associate of the UCSF Francis I. Proctor Foundation for Research in Ophthalmology. He has served as UCSF's medical director of ophthalmology and as medical eye bank director of UCSF's tissue bank.

Hwang has served in leadership and executive roles in a number of professional organizations, including president of the Ocular Microbiology and Immunology Group, and executive secretary of the Max Fine Cornea Society. For the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, he chaired a joint task force on the use of vancomycin in ophthalmology. He served on the writing committee for the AAO's Basic and Clinical Science Course's volume on cornea and external eye disease, authoring and editing the section on ocular infectious and external eye disease.

The American Academy of Ophthalmology has honored Hwang with awards, including the Senior Achievement Award. He has been named to the Castle Connolly America's Top Doctors list every year since 1996. He has published more than 100 scientific papers and abstracts, and co-authored two texts on cornea and refractive surgery.

A committed educator, Hwang is active in teaching UCSF medical students, residents and fellows. He has received the Kimura Award for Excellence in Teaching from the UCSF Department of Ophthalmology.

Hwang lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with his wife, who is also an ophthalmologist, and their three sons.

  • Education

    UCSF, 1984

  • Fellowships

    Doheny Eye Institute, Cornea, External Disease and Refractive Surgery, 1990

  • Board Certifications

    Ophthalmology, American Board of Ophthalmology

  • Academic Title


Medicine is my calling, and I'm privileged to tackle tough challenges, discover and share innovative ideas, and deliver compassionate patient care.

Where I see patients (2)

    My reviews


    Overall Experience
    524 Ratings
    About our process
    Dec 02, 2023
    Dr Hwang is one of the most pleasant and smartest doctors know. I forgot his name but so was the resident doctor who saw me first. Excellent chair-side manner. I tend to get nervous when being examined but I was very relaxed with him
    Nov 08, 2023
    Dr Hwang is fantastic.
    Oct 30, 2023
    Dr. Hwang is amazing and he tries to address all your concerns and questions and he doesn't rush you he is one of a kind and very caring and professional and knowledgeable!I m lucky to find him
    Oct 30, 2023
    Dr Hwang is an excellent doctor and I trust him totally
    Oct 23, 2023
    Dr. David Hwang embodies UCSF excellence compassion and expert specialized healthcare!!
    Oct 22, 2023
    Seems to have superb expertise and has achieved very good results for my health but seems rushed in appts and Impatient when asked to discuss alternative approaches.
    Oct 13, 2023
    Dr. Hwang is an excellent physician.
    Sep 22, 2023
    I tell all my friends and family about the care and understanding Dr. Hwang provides his patience. I always recommend Dr. Hwang and UCSF to everyone in my circle.
    Sep 20, 2023
    Dr Hwang is amazing He and his team are so knowledgeable and courteous. The spend the time needed to determine issues and potential remedies then explain with options available to correct the problem. The are courteous and show concern. Dr Hwang made my decision easy and I am so comfortable moving forward with the procedure recommended. He also made me comfortable with the procedure recovery and the projected final results. I have nothing but positive feedback for Dr. Hwang and his team.
    Sep 19, 2023
    He was friendly and professional. I'm very impressed with Dr. Hwang
    Sep 16, 2023
    Dr. Hwang is very kind professional and attentive!
    Sep 13, 2023
    Long wait was very frustrating.
    Sep 06, 2023
    Dr Hwang is very thorough and caring. He takes the time to listen to your concerns and provides thorough feedback.
    Sep 02, 2023
    5 stars in all areas. Thanks!
    Aug 30, 2023
    Aug 17, 2023
    Dr Hwang is the best
    Aug 16, 2023
    Dr Hwang is the best!
    Jul 30, 2023
    Dr Hwang is excellent
    Jul 18, 2023
    I have requested a second opinion regarding current treatment and in particular findings from one of Dr. Hwang's fellows that appeared in the written report but were not provided to nor discussed with me.
    Jul 15, 2023
    Always a challenge with the wait times but Dr David Hwang is absolutely superb in every way. His care has been amazing this last 5 years
    Jun 25, 2023
    Dr Hwang was relaxed and ultimely addressed my concern by offering a rather attractive alternative...a different IOL which looks really great.
    Jun 24, 2023
    All was perfect and professional!
    Jun 19, 2023
    Exceptional Doctor
    Jun 18, 2023
    Thorough and compassionate dealing with a patient.
    Jun 16, 2023
    Dr Hwang is outstanding!
    Jun 08, 2023
    Dr David Hwang is excellent
    Jun 05, 2023
    Providers would go beyond the standard to provide the best care to patient.
    Jun 04, 2023
    This doctor never is on time for appointments and I have waited more than 2 hours (after traveling 1 hr each wayP to see him. I have not experienced this long wait time with no updates with any other doctor.
    Jun 02, 2023
    Didn't Interact with a care giver
    May 19, 2023
    May 18, 2023
    I have seen Dr Hwang from 1996-2013. I came back due to insurance changes even though it is bet of travel to the City from Napa. Being that the new location has been built for the clinic it is very nice. The only complaint it that 90% of your patients have some sort of eye problems post surgery etc. The signage is done in pastels and not primary colors. Also the print size is not very large for example in the elevator as to which floor has which clinic. These use of Microsoft color palettes defaults your design teams to sue the low contrast colors which might look cute but are hard to read. For eye clinic patients. . ..
    May 13, 2023
    I feel the care provider Dr Hwang is excellent however I am appalled at the lack of coordination communication and administrative accountability at UCSF. I definitely would not recommend UCSF now to anyone I know. Much better follow up and communication at Stanford and Sutter.
    May 01, 2023
    At this point I do not have sufficient experience to be able to recommend this care provider.
    Apr 28, 2023
    Dr. Hwang is a renowned eye surgeon who treats each patient with care respect and kindness. It's a rare combination and I'm grateful to have him as my physician.
    Apr 26, 2023
    All of this is directed towards Dr. Hwang and not the other staff members who were very good at everything listed above. The end to end process with Dr. Hwang made me uncomfortable. It was pleasant when everything was going well but he is aggressive when something doesn't go as planned.
    Apr 17, 2023
    Dr hwang instills confidence and trustHe conveys the feeling he really cares about the outcome. I honestly think that confidence improves recovery
    Apr 08, 2023
    I was so impressed and so greatfulfor having this person for my doctor
    Apr 08, 2023
    The whole team was extraordinarily warm and professional!
    Mar 30, 2023
    Dr Hwang and all of his associates werr REALLY good!
    Mar 28, 2023
    Excellent doctors and staff. Professional and personable. To top rate!
    Mar 13, 2023
    Both Dr. Hwang and his technician were excellent.
    Mar 08, 2023
    I think Dr Hwang is an excellent doctor but I would no longer recommend UCSF. The staffing scheduling parking and congestion in waitlng rooms and scheduling has declined significantly.
    Mar 04, 2023
    Very good service
    Mar 03, 2023
    Superb physician. Long wait to see.
    Feb 22, 2023
    No further comments...all very good staff and providers
    Feb 15, 2023
    Dr. Hwang is not only a superb surgeon but also personable and caring for the patient.
    Feb 15, 2023
    Had to wait almost 2 hours to see Dr Hwang
    Feb 07, 2023
    Dr Hwang is not just an exceptional surgeon he is an exceptional human being. I am grateful to be able to receive guidance and care from this provider.
    Feb 03, 2023
    Dr Hwang is just outstanding brilliant he's the best. I would not trust my eyes to anyone else. He's also so nice and caring. And he leads the whole practice so everyone is that way.
    Jan 18, 2023
    The waiting times are unbearable .
    Jan 15, 2023
    Dr David Hwang is one of my favorite doctors. He is a great listener and communicator. He is the type of doctor that does not beat around the bush per se. He gives it to you straight. He is a genius and very well informed in his field.
    Jan 13, 2023
    Excellent in all respects and Dr. Hwang is the best. Couldn't have asked for a better doctor and team
    Jan 11, 2023
    Dr Hwang is outstanding. Please encourage and support him so he can develop colleagues like him.
    Jan 09, 2023
    Dr. David Hwang is a very caring dedicated and knowledgeable physician.
    Jan 08, 2023
    No one better than Dr. Hwang. He is a brilliant physician/surgeon AND a nice man.
    Dec 23, 2022
    Outstanding care from Dr Hwang.
    Dec 21, 2022
    Very good.
    Dec 18, 2022
    He's not willing to help me but he did send referrals
    Dec 17, 2022
    Dr Hwang is terrific in person but one needs 10-12 months lead time to get in to see him. Some times my appointment will be canceled by his office and then I'm then back to 10-12 months lead time to get into see him. Given how late he runs I budget at least 2.5-3 hours for the appointment. I could never recommend this to someone. (I stay with Dr Hwang as I have seen him for 20 years including my Lasik many years ago.)
    Dec 10, 2022
    Very honored to be able to have consultation with one of the Best Doctors in San Francisco renown eye specialist Dr. David Hwang! He examined my eyes and said I can wait 2-4 years before cataract removal surgery because mine is very mild (whereas my current doctor told me to schedule surgery next month). His expertise and advice made a tremendous difference in my life! I am very grateful!
    Nov 21, 2022
    My visit with Dr. Hwang and his care team was one of THE best eye care experiences I've ever had. I was extremely pleased with all aspects of the visit.
    Nov 17, 2022
    Good attention to concerns
    Nov 05, 2022
    The length of time waiting for the care provider after check-in and preliminary exams was long. It would have been nice if someone had stepped in to let me know care provider was running later than the waiting time board displayed in the check-in area.
    Nov 02, 2022
    Dr Hwang is supreme in every way! I am so fortunate to have been his patient for the last decade and look forward to his extreme skills and intelligence for the next one!
    Oct 29, 2022
    He's a great doctor and human being.
    Oct 15, 2022
    Like talking to a very smart good friend.
    Oct 13, 2022
    Dr. Hwang is extremely polite always interested in my healthauto immune disease and family.
    Oct 12, 2022
    Dr Hwang is very thorough in explaining procedures. He is so kind and courteous . He is a truly compassionate professional !!
    Oct 08, 2022
    The doctor is very professional and knowledgeable but also kind and caring
    Oct 06, 2022
    My service provider is the consummate professional!
    Oct 05, 2022
    Dr. David Hwang is excellent. I feel fortunate to have him as my doctor.
    Sep 29, 2022
    Sep 28, 2022
    Love Dr. Hwang-very knowledgeable and willing to thoroughly discuss issues and concerns
    Sep 27, 2022
    DR HWANG is the BEST! Thank you!
    Sep 12, 2022
    I have always had great care and respect from staff and the doctors
    Sep 10, 2022
    Dr. Hwang listened and answered all of my questions.
    Sep 07, 2022
    I am assuming when you said the provider are talking about the doctor. I understand but I didn't like it He took care 2 another patients who got there later than me because "their case was gonna take care less time than me
    Sep 07, 2022
    Dr. Hwang is a world-class professional - competent credible great listener empathetic clear in status update and instructions. The best I've ever experienced across continents and practices!
    Sep 07, 2022
    Satisfying experience
    Aug 08, 2022
    I have the most respect and confidence in Dr. David Hwang. I am grateful for his care and the gift of restored sight in my right eye. I thank him every day.
    Aug 06, 2022
    Staff is great. Wait time and scheduling problems are off putting
    Aug 05, 2022
    Wasn't seen by the doctor until about 1:45 after the scheduled appointment time. Dr said he was sorry; he was having a "crazy day".
    Aug 03, 2022
    Dr. Hwang listens and explains things in an understandable way.
    Aug 02, 2022
    The provider could not really explain why my vision had deteriorated in my right eye nor did he seem to address it. Rather he wanted to put a high end scleral contact lens in the left eye with which I already see much better saying it would accommodate and take over for my right eye. Not sure he understood me when I said the left eye has already taken over for the right and I cannot ignore the blurriness of the right eye.
    Jul 30, 2022
    2 hours wait for provider but only a few minutes for actual time with provider. Provider in a hurry.
    Jul 16, 2022
    Dr. H is The Bomb.
    Jul 06, 2022
    Very good service
    Jun 10, 2022
    Different instructions for after care that were not clear.
    Jun 05, 2022
    I very confident the doctor knows what he is doing. The commentary is all on the interaction. All the visits are extremely rushed. I don't feel that my questions are being addressed. I feel somewhat dismissed and I leave feeling anxiety because I don't get to my questions. I don't think I'm being unfair because this is a second opinion and the point of the interaction is to answer questions about raised during initial assessment.
    May 27, 2022
    Dr Hwang provided clear instructions. He also answered all my questions.
    May 19, 2022
    He has finished with my treatment.
    May 18, 2022
    I respect the doctor's credentials. He openly boxed me into a category of patients that like to ask questions and rather than answering them said I should have faith. That's fine but it's not a substitute for addressing my questions and concerns which remained unanswered.It was kind of dismissive. There has to be a better balance.
    May 18, 2022
    Dr Hwang is an amazing physician who interacts so positively answers all questions describes all procedures. He's the best doctor I've ever had.
    May 09, 2022
    Excellent as always
    May 07, 2022
    Dr has been well courtes and knowloge every time he atended me as patien.
    Apr 20, 2022
    I had a procedure on my left eye at other hospital. Dr. Hwang repaired and saved my left eye. I will forever grateful to Dr. Hwang and his team.
    Apr 11, 2022
    Dr Hwang is exceptional. I have landed in the hands of a skilled and competent clinician an effective communicator a team leader of an effective clinical team and a kind man who expresses empathy and respect. It makes me know I'm in good hands for an upcoming surgery.
    Apr 11, 2022
    I was told I'd get written instructions after procedure I did not
    Apr 08, 2022
    Thorough clear on point.
    Apr 04, 2022
    Dr. David Hwang is an exceptional doctor with excellent people skills. He was a joy to see about a problem. Everyone else I saw was excellent as well.
    Apr 02, 2022
    Dr David Hwang is a great example of professionalism and UCSF is fortunate to have this surgeon on board. Please relay my gratitude to him.
    Mar 31, 2022
    Dr. Hwang is a very man but he takes time to listen and answer questions.
    Mar 31, 2022
    He was excellent across all measures.
    Mar 30, 2022
    David Hwang is the best doctor ever!!!
    Mar 21, 2022
    The doctor was very straightforward and clear in explaining my condition and recommendations.
    Mar 09, 2022
    There was suppose to be a procedure to be done post op eye surgery but it wasn't done because of the pandemic and I was the one who called the clinic about this to be done but the MD told me is too late. I'm just concerned what will be the impact or problem in the future of not having this procedure. I think it's the clinic responsibility to have contacted me to have this procedure done on time not me calling them about it!
    Mar 04, 2022
    Dr. Hwang was excellent as was Dr. Wong. She was super efficient and I could tell she was really trying to help expedite my care. She listened to my concerns and respected my needs - I really appreciated that greatly and look forward to seeing her next year. Dr. Hwang was wonderful as always. He is so busy but he took time to listen to me and to answer my questions. Great team!
    Feb 24, 2022
    Dr Hwang is the very BEST! Thank you UCSF :)
    Feb 18, 2022