Martin S. Cogen, MD

Professor, UAB Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences

Dr. Cogen treats pediatric patients for all types of ophthalmologic conditions including refractive errors (i.e., myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism), as well as numerous medical and surgical diseases affecting children’s vision such as amblyopia, strabismus, dacryostenosis, retinopathy of prematurity, infections, injuries, and ocular tumors. 

Dr. Cogen also actively participates in charitable outreach programs with Sight Savers America in underserved regions of Alabama. He sees pediatric patients who have already failed an eye exam, signaling they may have a vision issue. He is then able to make a diagnosis and prescribe the appropriate treatment. Dr. Cogen has been a member of the UAB Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences since 1989 and is a member of the American Academy of Ophthalmology and the American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus.

Dr. Cogen received his medical degree from the UAB School of Medicine. He completed his internship in the Department of Medicine at UAB, and his residency with the UAB Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences. He completed a fellowship in pediatric ophthalmology and strabismus with Zane Pollard, M.D., at the James Hall Eye Center at Scottish Rite Children’s Hospital in Atlanta, Ga. He is a native of Philadelphia, Penn., and received his bachelor’s of science from Trinity College in Hartford, Conn.

Dr. Cogen has published numerous articles on new treatments for strabismus, and he participated in the multicenter Amblyopia Treatment Study, which sought to determine the optimum therapeutic strategy for dealing with this common disorder which causes visual loss in up to five percent of children.

Artist:  Krista Webb

Photo courtesy of Usher Syndrome Society

Krista lives in Texas with her husband of 15 years and 2 children, who are 9 and 11. They enjoy traveling and camping, especially in the great Pacific Northwest.

Krista has Usher syndrome, type 2. Usher syndrome is the number one genetic cause of combined deaf-blindness. She is 36 years old and has been wearing hearing aids since the age of 2. She became legally blind at age 31 and hung up her driving keys for good. She then enrolled in Orientation and Mobility and started building a good relationship with her white cane, which she has named Freedom. 

Interestingly enough, Krista discovered wood burning art (pyrography) at age 32. Since then she’s been hooked and hasn’t stopped creating pieces for people all over the US. She burns custom art on cork hats, cutting boards, keychains, coasters, wall art, wind spinners, and the list goes on. Wood burning is not a quick process, which is why she enjoys it so much. It truly is her therapy. 

Krista uses Instagram to connect with other deaf-blind people all over the world. She loves creating art and educating people how blindness is a spectrum.

Having less than 5° of central vision does have its challenges. Yet, as long as she has just a tiny bit of vision left, Krista plans to keep wood burning as long as possible. Her mantra is to always live in the moment.