Melanie Schmitt, MD

Melanie Schmitt, MD

Assistant Professor, John W. and Helen Doolittle Professor


Appointments and Honors

Director of the Pediatric Inherited Retinal Degeneration Clinic
Co-Director of the Ocular Genetics Program


Pediatric ophthalmology and adult strabismus

Medical and Surgical Interests

  • Amblyopia
  • Comprehensive pediatric ophthalmology
  • Inherited retinal degenerations
  • Nasolacrimal disorders
  • Pediatric cataract surgery/lens implantation
  • Pediatric strabismus
  • Retinopathy of prematurity

Research Interests

  • Inherited retinal disorders
  • Pediatric ophthalmology

Research Highlights

Dr. Schmitt, a respected pediatric ophthalmologist and pediatric director of the inherited retinal degeneration clinic, recently investigated the management of an ultra-rare disease, Alström Syndrome (ALMS). ALMS is characterized by cone-rod dystrophy, obesity, progressive sensorineural hearing loss, cardiomyopathy, insulin resistance and multi-organ dysfunction. In this case series, Dr. Schmitt outlines the diagnostic challenges of three children that were previously undiagnosed with ALMS prior to being referred to pediatric ophthalmology. Electroretinogram testing displayed severe global depression and all cases carried gene mutations for ALMS. Although no cure for ALMS exists, diagnosis allows for multidisciplinary treatment of global issues ensuring more positive outcomes.
Ocular evaluation and genetic test for an early Alström Syndrome diagnosis


Fellowship: Pediatric Ophthalmology and Adult Strabismus, Cole Eye Institute, Cleveland, Ohio

Residency: William Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak, MI

Internship: William Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak, MI

Medical School: University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, Madison, WI