Mark J. Lucarelli, MD, FACS

Mark J. Lucarelli, MD, FACS

Richard K. Dortzbach Professor of Ophthalmic Facial Plastic Surgery, Oculoplastic and Reconstructive Surgery Service Chief, UW Health University Station Eye Clinic Medical Director


Appointments and Honors

Oculoplastic and Reconstructive Surgery Service Chief
Oculofacial Plastic Surgery Fellowship Director
Medical Director of UW Health University Station Eye Clinic


Oculofacial plastic and reconstructive surgery

Medical and Surgical Interests

  • Blepharoplasty (eyelid lift)
  • Botox®
  • Brow lift
  • Cosmetic laser procedures
  • Eyelid skin cancer reconstruction
  • Lacrimal (tear drain) and orbital disorders
  • Ptosis (drooping eyelid) surgery
  • Thyroid eye disease

Research Interests

  • Orbital, facial, and periocular anatomy
  • Thyroid eye disease clinical trial (Immunovant)

Research Highlights

Dr. Lucarelli has published extensively throughout his career. For over two decades he has helped characterize anatomical features of the orbital and facial tissues aiding surgical planning. His investigations at one point led him to study the anatomic and histologic changes in midfacial ptosis in cadavers. His work characterized changes in crucial ligaments associated with this condition. This work was recognized with the Marvin H. Quickert Thesis Award of the American Society of Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (ASOPRS). Another collaborative effort he assisted with identified early periocular neural crest signaling involvement for the development of extraocular muscles (EOM). Three patients born with congenital anophthalmia were retrospectively studied to understand morphological changes to the EOM. These structural changes were then studied in zebrafish and chick embryos to correlate the timing of the EOM organization. The results may aid in narrowing the window of genetic or environmental insults, thereby improving genetic counseling and surgical efforts. Dr. Lucarelli has also helped document facial muscle depth for autologous fat transfer, which earned the Richard Webster Award of the American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery. He also studied the motor innervation to the glabellar muscles in another study using cadavers in order to guide cosmetic surgeons during facial procedures or injections. Dr. Lucarelli also collaborated on research describing minimally invasive surgical techniques to address blepharoptosis (droopy eyelids).

Dr. Lucarelli has investigated the link between emotional cognition and the use of botulinum toxin-A for cosmetic purposes. The research supports facial feedback theories and raises further questions around emotional reactivity as a result of the procedure. Dr. Lucarelli collaborated to publish an extensive retrospective study of hundreds of patients with lymphoma involving the ocular adnexa.

These works have been cited hundreds of times and resulted in numerous awards:

Lucarelli et al, 2000, The anatomy of midfacial ptosis
Bohnsack et al, 2011, Development of extraocular muscles requires early signals from periocular neural crest and the developing eye
Rose et al, 2003, Blepharoptosis treatment options during upper eyelid cosmetic blepharoplasty
Burkat et al, 2005, Blepharoptosis treatment options during upper eyelid cosmetic blepharoplasty
Rose et al, 2003, Anatomy of facial recipient sites for autologous fat transfer
Havas et al, 2010, Cosmetic use of botulinum toxin-A affects processing of emotional language
Ferry et al, 2007, Lymphoma of the ocular adnexa: a study of 353 cases


Fellowship: Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics, Madison, WI

Residency: Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, Boston, MA

Internship: Barnes-Jewish Hospital, St. Louis, MO

Medical School: Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO