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Rajen Desai MD FACS is a board certified cataract and glaucoma surgeon with the Witlin Center for Advanced Eye Care, Freehold Ophthalmology and Santamaria Eye Center.

Dr. Desai graduated Phi Beta Kappa with honors from Stanford University, followed by a M.D. from Stanford Medical School, with an extra year of training in clinical research. He served as 2nd Lieutenant and pilot in the U.S. Air Force Auxiliary Civil Air Patrol in Texas, followed by residency, chief residency, and glaucoma fellowship at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago, ranked as one of the top 10 medical centers in the nation.

With over 20 years of experience in vision research, Dr. Desai has produced over 50 peer-reviewed publications and presentations across the country. In 2007, he served as a study chair on an FDA clinical trial to introduce a new medication to reduce scarring after eye surgery. In 2019, he served as a principal investigator for another FDA clinical trial to develop a more effective surgical technique of implanting a novel glaucoma stent.

Dr. Desai brings the latest advances of vision research to the operating room, including laser-assisted cataract surgery, and advanced intraocular lens implants that treat astigmatism for both distance and near vision.

For his consistently high surgical success rate, various ocular device companies often select Dr. Desai to be their first surgeon in New Jersey to introduce the least invasive and latest upgrades of surgical devices, including:

  • First surgeon on the East Coast (and second in the world) to operate using the TrabEx Pro, to remove diseased tissue obstructing the glaucoma drain.
  • First surgeon in New Jersey to implant the iStent Inject, smallest metallic device used to treat open angle glaucoma
  • First surgeon in New Jersey to utilize the upgraded inserter to implant the Xen stent, a gel device used to treat glaucoma when medications are ineffective or have intolerable side effects
  • First surgeon in New Jersey to implant the Ahmed ClearPath, a glaucoma shunt with less risk of double vision and greater pressure reduction
  • First surgeon in New Jersey to operate using the Omni Next Generation system for an implant-free glaucoma surgery
  • First surgeon in New Jersey to operate using the Streamline, the least invasive implant-free glaucoma procedure to open and dilate the drainage canal
  • First surgeon in New Jersey to be certified on the Micropulse Trans-scleral Laser Therapy Rev2 Probe, a glaucoma device that avoids surgical incisions
These devices reduce the eye pressure in a much safer and controlled manner than other procedures performed elsewhere in the state.

Having operated on thousands of patients, Dr. Desai has been regularly trusted by other physicians, optometrists, and nurses to perform cataract and glaucoma surgery on their and their own parents' eyes.  Other New Jersey cataract surgeons have chosen Dr. Desai to train them one-to-one in the operating room during cataract surgery.

Passionate about producing excellent surgical outcomes, and teaching others, Dr. Desai received the "Patient's Choice Award" and the "2011 Best Teacher of Medical Students Award." In 2013, he earned the Society of Heed Fellows Award, one of only 5 honorees chosen across the nation. In 2018, he earned the "America's Top Ophthalmologist" award.

Dr. Desai is a member of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgeons, the American Glaucoma Society, the Society of Heed Fellows, and the American College of Surgeons.

When not in the office or operating room, Dr. Desai enjoys spending time with his wife and daughters, and photography.
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Explains conditions and treatments
Takes time to answer my questions
Provides follow-up as needed
Office cleanliness

Based on patient feedback.


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Dr. Desai's Rating
Patient Perspective
5.0 Explains conditions and treatments
5.0 Takes time to answer my questions
5.0 Provides follow-up as needed
Office Rating
Showing ratings for:
385 State Route 18 Ste H, East Brunswick, NJ, 08816
n/a Average office wait time
5.0 Office cleanliness
5.0 Courteous staff
4.0 Scheduling flexibility
The Witlin Center For Advanced Eyecare
385 State Route 18 Ste H
East Brunswick, NJ, 08816
Showing 1-7 of 7 reviews
"The catarat surgery went well. My Aunts vision is clear and the staff was very supportive. My Aunts vision has improved after the surgery. Thank you very much. Appreciate everything. Dr. Desai did a excellent job improving my Aunts Vision. I would recommend this doctor for any eye check up. "
  • May 3, 2024
"We recent had my mother's cataract surgery performed by Dr. Rajen Desai, and the experience exceeded all our expectations. From our very first appointment, Dr. Desai demonstrated an exceptional level of expertise and knowledge, making us feel confident in our decision to proceed with the surgery. His bedside manner is truly commendable. He took the time to thoroughly explain the procedure, answering all our questions with patience and clarity. This was incredibly reassuring, especially considering the natural apprehensions one might have about eye surgery. Especially when it’s your mother. The surgery itself was a resounding success, and the follow-up care was equally impressive. Dr. Desai's attentiveness didn't just stop at the operating room; he ensured that the post-surgery recovery was smooth and comfortable for my mom. His timely check-ups and genuine concern for her well-being during the follow-up visits highlighted his dedication to patient care. What really stood out to us was ...
Dr. Desai's ability to combine professionalism with a warm, empathetic approach. His team, too, reflected these qualities, making each visit to the clinic a positive experience. I highly recommend Dr. Rajen Desai for anyone considering cataract surgery. His expertise, coupled with his excellent bedside manner, makes him a standout in his field. We are truly grateful for the care he provided and the positive impact it has had on my mother's quality of life. "
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  • December 4, 2023
"I recently had cataract surgery in the East Brunswick clinic. I received excellent pre and post surgical care. Surgery was very smooth. Other doctors, coordinator, nurses and staff were very professional. Overall, I am very satisfied."
  • September 24, 2023
"I’m an ophthalmologist in a different state. My dad needed cataract surgery done, but his insurance restricted him to NJ only. We were so very fortunate to come across Dr. Desai. He offered top notch care and delivered fantastic results with excellent surgeries for my dad. I highly recommend Dr. Desai for all your eye care and surgical needs!"
  • February 12, 2023
"I had a great experience with Dr Desai. I was initially referred to him by another ophthalmologist for a combined glaucoma and cataract surgery. Due to my lazy eye, cataract being very big and my eye pressures being very high the surgery turned out to be complicated in both eyes. But Dr Desai did a great job he explained everything to me thoroughly, all the options and went over which would probably be the best for me. I felt very comfortable and confident going through with the surgeries with him. And now that I've had the surgeries in both eyes my eye pressures are under control without medication and I am seeing clearly without glasses which has not been the case for years."
  • December 31, 2022
"A very gentle caring glaucoma specialist. I had two CPC laser procedures done by Dr. Desai which met the target lowering eye pressure. LC"
  • December 14, 2022
"amazing doctor who helped me see better after combo cataract-glaucoma stent surgery. "
  • May 6, 2021


The Witlin Center For Advanced Eyecare
385 State Route 18 Ste H
East Brunswick, NJ, 08816
  • Accepting New Patients
  • Medicare Accepted
  • Medicaid Accepted
Mon8:30 am - 4:00 pm
Tue8:30 am - 4:00 pm
Wed8:30 am - 4:00 pm
Thu8:30 am - 4:00 pm
Fri8:30 am - 3:00 pm
  • Accepting New Patients
  • Medicare Accepted
  • Medicaid Accepted



Medical School
Stanford University School Of Medicine
Graduated 2008
Northwestern University


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