Continued improvements in technology have made LASIK, Laser vision correction more accurate and precise while at the same time improving safety and decreasing the incidence of the undesirable side effects. Laser design improvements including Variable Spot Scanning (or “flying spot”) and a built in active Eye Tracker, (truly “Star War’s” technology adapted to the Laser) have increased the accuracy and precision of the procedure. Improved LASIK instrumentation and the newer Epi-LASIK procedure have significantly improved the safety of the procedure and reduced the potential for complications and risks, including less chance of extended dry eye problems post-operatively. Individualized Laser Vision Correction with CustomVue technology allows for “Wavefront-guided” treatments to be performed. This incredible technology has made visual results better, more stable over time and most importantly, reduces the chance of developing night vision symptoms such as glare, halos and starburst.
Epi-LASIK is a new and improved breakthrough in Laser Vision Correction technique that combines the advantages of PRK and LASIK and eliminates most of their disadvantages. Treating the surface of the cornea without any cutting of the cornea may produce a more predictable outcome for wavefront-guided “Custom” laser vision correction. Advantages of Epi-LASIK include: (as compared to traditional LASIK) less risk of complications and significantly less chance of extended postoperative dry eye problems, and (as compared to LASEK or PRK) earlier visual recovery and less postoperative discomfort. Epi-LASIK is also ideal for treating patients with thin corneas since it removes about twenty percent less tissue than LASIK.
In order to perform PRK, we remove the surface epithelium (the thin layer of skin covering the front surface of the cornea). Once removed, the surface of the eye is treated with the laser. Traditional LASEK uses alcohol to assist in separating the epithelium as an intact unit. In LASEK the epithelium is carefully moved aside during the laser treatment and then removed from the cornea. After both procedures a bandage contact lens is placed in the eye for 4-5 days while the epithelium slowly regenerates itself.
In LASEK, the use of alcohol kills the epithelial cells and in PRK, the epithelial cells are removed. This causes mild swelling of the cornea that results in discomfort, light sensitivity, and a slightly slower return to functional vision. The Epi-LASIK procedure employs a unique Epi-Keratome to mechanically separate the epithelium from the “true” corneal surface, in order to make a flap similar to a traditional LASIK flap. Unlike LASIK, NO LASER CREATED FLAPS and NO CUTTING are required. And unlike LASEK, no alcohol is required.
In summary, Epi-LASIK is a significant advancement in laser vision correction. It is very exciting to be able to offer a procedure that further improves the visual results and decreases the potential for side effects, especially those associated with dry eye. Consider a complimentary screening and see for yourself...a world without dependence on eyeglasses or contact lenses.
CUSTOM “WAVESCAN” TECHNOLOGY
Wavescan technology was originally developed for use in high-powered telescopes to reduce distortions when viewing distant objects in space. The WaveScan is a diagnostic device that identifies and measures subtle imperfections in an individual’s eye approximately 25 times more precisely than standard methods used for glasses and contact lenses. The WaveScan compares the behavior of light passing through your eye to the behavior of light as it would pass through an ideal eye with error-free imaging. The result is an in-depth representation of the refractive errors or aberrations present in your vision. Surgeons then utilize this information to design individualized treatments that are as unique as your fingerprints. The ability to measure and correct for these microscopic imperfections significantly improves the eye’s ability to form a sharper image. This is important relative to the quality of daytime vision and even more critical to the quality of nighttime vision, going a long way toward reducing the chance of developing unpleasant night vision symptoms such as glare, halos and starburst. The ability to enlarge the diameter of the Laser treatment is also important if the pupil is relatively large when measured in a completely darkened environment. If the Laser treatment diameter was smaller than the “dark-adapted” pupil, light would pass through an untreated peripheral area of the cornea and be out of focus, thus increasing the chance and severity of night vision symptoms such as glare, haloes and starburst.
Laser design improvements including Variable Spot Scanning (or “flying spot”) and a built in active Eye Tracker have increased the accuracy and precision of the procedure. Variable Spot Scanning incorporates a sophisticated array of seven different beam diameters giving greater flexibility to Customize your Individualized Laser Vision Correction. In addition, the built-in 3-dimensional active Eye Tracker is truly “Star War’s” technology adapted to the Laser. Infrared cameras actively follow the tiniest motions of your eye in all three dimensions, capturing more than 99.4 percent of eye movement. The active Eye Tracker in the VISX Laser does not require your eye to be dilated like other Laser systems, so you can be more comfortable during your treatment. The automatic centering feature enables precise identification of the center of your pupil and keeps the Laser centered to within 50 microns (thinner than the width of a human hair), even if your eye moves. This allows you to relax during your treatment with the knowledge that the Laser treatment will be delivered accurately.
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Dr. Salinger - VIP Laser Center