Dr. Vance Thompson – Ophthalmologist Surgeon

Meet Dr. Vance Thompson

Vance Thompson, M.D. is a board-certified ophthalmologist in Sioux Falls, SD specializing in laser vision correction and advanced cataract surgery. As the director of refractive surgery at Vance Thompson Vision, Dr. Thompson leads a collaborative team of medical professionals in treating vision conditions using advanced technology and innovative techniques. A leading expert in LASIK and cataract surgery, Dr. Thompson strives to enrich his patients’ lives by helping them experience visual clarity. Dr. Thompson currently serves as a professor of ophthalmology at the Sanford USD School of Medicine and hopes to continue sharing his extensive knowledge of laser and implant vision correction for years to come.

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Education & Training

A Gregory, SD native, Dr. Thompson attended college and received his Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry from the University of South Dakota. Following graduation, Dr. Thompson enrolled in the University of South Dakota’s School of Medicine, where he completed his Doctorate of Medicine. Eager to further his education, Dr. Thompson’s next step was the completion of his ophthalmology residency at the University of Missouri/Columbia. He then went on to complete a fellowship in refractive and cataract surgery with Dr. Dan Durrie and Dr. John Hunkeler of Hunkeler Eye Centers in Kansas City, KS. Dr. Thompson is also a fellow of the American College of Surgeons.

Skills & Expertise

With more than 25 years of experience, Dr. Thompson has performed more than 75,000 vision correction surgeries worldwide and remains among a select group of refractive and cataract surgeons who prioritize the use of innovative, advanced surgical techniques. Dr. Thompson’s extensive research and expansive knowledge of sophisticated laser and implant surgical technologies are what sets him apart in the ophthalmology fields, which qualify him to teach the techniques to eye surgeons all over the globe. By lecturing and continuing to research the topics, Dr. Thompson hopes to pioneer the way toward continued advances in the industry.

Extracurricular Involvement

As a leading international researcher, Dr. Thompson has played an important role in the discovery and development of the advanced technologies and techniques used in both laser and implant vision correction surgeries today. Serving as the medical monitor lead, or principal investigator, Dr. Thompson has led over 65 FDA-monitored clinical trials on the subjects and has published numerous papers and book chapters on his findings. In addition, Dr. Thompson co-authored a textbook titled Refractive Surgery, and continues to lecture and teach at the Sanford USD School of Medicine.

Hobbies & Personal interests

Dr. Thompson and his wife Jana reside in Sioux Falls, SD. Together they have three children, Blake (and his wife Kayla), Joel, and Lauren. In his free time, Dr. Thompson’s favorite hobby is hunting and considers it his legacy, passed down by generations before him. Having hunted the South Dakota plains with his brother and father, Dr. Thompson is now sharing the tradition with his sons and hopes to one day include his grandsons. All his life, Dr. Thompson has dreamed of a way to remain true to his roots while contributing to the world around him. For this reason, his place at Vance Thompson Vision feels like a dream come true. 


"I flew in from Seattle WA to have LASIK performed by Dr. Berdahl at Vance Thompson Vision. From the moment I walked in, I was greeted warmly greeted. Their lobby eschews a traditional waiting room configuration and instead is setup more like coffee shop, including fresh baked cookies, coffee, fruit, and soda. Everyone there was friendly and took time to answer any and all questions. They explained the procedure step by step, went over the aftercare instructions. The whole time my comfort was the primary concern. The outcome of the surgery couldn't have been any better resulting in 20/15 eye. I'm so thrilled to be glasses and contact free. Thank you Dr. Berdahl!"



"I have been coming here for a year now and am very impressed.  The staff, from check out, to nurses, ancillary staff, and doctors, are exceptional.  Very friendly and helpful.  No Window Witches here!  They even remember I liked the Gipsy Kings on Pandora in the exam room.   Beyond that Vance Thompson vision also stays abreast of new procedures and technology and offers the latest treatments.  They offer a care credit program for procedures not covered by insurance. The building itself is beautiful with nice exam and treatment rooms, and an open airy waiting room with complimentary coffee, water, fruit, or cookies.  Magazines are all current."



"Two weeks ago I had Lasik surgery at Vance Thompson Vision. I was overwhelmingly impressed with the whole experience. Scheduling was a breeze with their friendly staff. I even had to reschedule an appointment and they graciously found me another appointment within the same week. And I have never been to any medical appointment with such a personal touch and friendliness in their service, right down to my favorite radio station playing in each exam room I was in. I was a little nervous for the surgery itself. But the staff answered my questions and concerns and even Dr. Thompson himself talked with me more than one time to reassure me. The surgery took around 15 minutes for both eyes. There was no pain. Dr. Thompson and staff were verbally reassuring me and giving clear instructions throughout. As soon as i walked out of the office i could see. For the first few hours it was a bit blurry, like looking through a dirty window, but i could tell i could see. When i woke up the next morning i could read the plaque on the wall across my bedroom. And every once in a while the amazement still runs through my mind, "I can see! I can really see!" I would recommend Vance Thompson Vision to everyone!"



"Vance Thompson Vision in Fargo went over the top for me today and I'm not even their patient, my mom, Linda Pagenkopf is. I have been going with my mom to her appointments and a month ago when we set her appt. for today, I laughed and said we would remember this one because of my birthday! Today, they had this wonderful birthday cake for me! I was just stunned. It warmed my heart to know that the great people at Vance Thompson Vision cared enough to do something like this for me. I truly appreciate their kindness."



"Vance Thompson and his team took amazing care me. Best Dr. Around I was scared he kept me calm my 1st surgery ever. He Text me to make sure I was doing ok after hours following up, ment alot to me that every Dr I had been to don't do that. THOMPSON GOES OUT OF HIS WAY FOR HIS PATIENTS AND TURLEY CARES ABOUT THEM.. I will reccomend him to anyone for major surgeries AND LASIK THE COLOR AND ENHANCEMENTS LIFE CHANGING. I cried when I could see. Couldn't of asked for a better dr. THANK YOU DR. VANCE THOMPSON!! �� NO MORE NEERDY GLASSES FOR ME ��"