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A New ‘Site’ For Eye Surgery

By Hugo Higa
Owner of Hugo Higa, M.D.

Many people have asked me why I specialize in both ophthalmology and cosmetic surgery, and there’s a funny story about how my practice evolved.

After my medical studies, I returned to Hawaii in 1998, practicing ophthalmology in Honolulu and Aiea. Time and time again, after correcting a patient’s vision, their comment would be something like, “I can see great now, doc … but oh my goodness, I look really old!”


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Hugo Higa

When I opened my own practice in 2004, I put my dual training in ophthalmology and oculoplastics to use, and really started focusing on both the aesthetic and vision needs of my patients. I initially may treat a patient for cataracts, for example, and then do surgery on their lids, if that is a problem area for them. Among the most popular cosmetic procedures are surgeries to treat droopy upper eyelids, undereye bags, and Fraxel lasers for aging skin. If you take a look at cosmetic surgery statistics in recent years, you’ll see that eyelid surgery is one of the most popular procedures available. The demand for my niche in ophthalmology and oculoplastics molded my career into what it is today.

I moved to a much larger office on the ground floor of Pan Am Building in 2012 to better serve my patients with an optometrist, optical shop, medi-spa and expanded cosmetic procedures.

One of my dreams over the years has been to open my own surgery center, and I’m thrilled to say that dream has come to fruition with the opening of Surgery Center of the Pacific at Hale Pawa‘a. The 2,500-square-foot, state-of-the-art, multipurpose ophthalmology-cosmetic surgery center features a reception area, operating room, four pre-op/recovery bays, break room, storage room and office. Currently, I perform surgeries there two days a week with a support team of eight.

My ultimate goal is to have the surgery center in use five-six days a week, and I welcome other practicing doctors to call me at 947-2020 if they are interested in checking out the center as a place to care for their patients.

The new surgery center allows me to provide more personal care to my patients rather than having them come to a hectic and perhaps more intimidating hospital setting. Most of my staff at the surgery center also work at my two other offices, so the patients receive consistent care, from diagnosis to treatment to follow-up, from people they are familiar with.

We put our patients first and hope our new surgery center will be one more way we can better serve them.

For more information, call 947-2020, visit hugohigamd.com or find us on Facebook.