An update on LASIK from Dr. Kerrie Meades
I have now been performing LASIK eye surgery (remodelling of the cornea under a thin corneal flap to correct a refractive error) for over 10 years. It is also about 10 years now since I had LASIK performed on my own eyes.
Since its development LASIK rapidly replaced radial keratotomy and PRK, mainly due to a more rapid recovery period. However recently PRK has re-emerged in selected cases due to its excellent safety profile, control of corneal haze and minimal disturbance to the cornea.
I am also seeing Phakic IOLs gradually emerge as an alternative to LASIK in more difficult cases, e.g. high myopia, hypermetropia and astigmatism.
LASIK has also been further refined recently by the use of abberometry, the ability to measure in detail visual imperfections. This allows more customized treatments, tissue saving and better eye tracking mechanisms, including iris recognition.
Over the years several techniques have been introduced to create the flap including various microkeratomes and femtosecond devices, e.g. intralase. Each of these techniques have their pluses and minuses and should be discussed with your eye surgeon.
I believe the next major advance will be when the flap is completely avoided, without any prolonged recovery period, and the stroma is directly treated or removed.
Until then you can enjoy life without glasses or contact lens today, as I discovered for myself, using the variety of LASIK and eye laser procedures currently available.