New trend in Laser Eye Surgery tailors eyesight to profession, lifestyle (SmartPlanet)

aawomanEyeLooksUpforProfessionals2A new trend is emerging at the forefront of laser eye surgery: patients who want to tailor their eyesight to suit their lifestyle or profession, hoping for a bespoke optical edge in their field.

Are you a hunter who could use better long-range vision? There’s a laser eye surgery procedure for that.

Are you a tailor who needs to optimize your vision to the short distance between you and your textiles? There’s a surgical procedure for that.

Are you a long-haul trucker and need eyesight that’s optimized for the road and the night? There’s a surgical procedure for that, too.

Laser refractive surgery is traditionally used to alter the shape of the cornea to correct myopia (short-sightedness) or hyperopia (longsightedness). Now, wavefront technology can map 250 points on the cornea and iris in an attempt to repair vision conditions that can’t be fixed with contact lenses or glasses, such as a “halo effect” around lights.

NASA originally developed wavefront sensing technology for the Hubble Telescope.

A Times Online notes that the procedure is “one of the three most common surgical treatments in Britain”, amounting to about 100,000 people who undergo the procedure each year. According to the article, about 20 million have had it worldwide, and “an increasing number have their corneas tailored to meet specific demands.”

One doctor, Julian Stevens of Moorfields Eye Hospital, says in the article that he’s performed tailored treatment for members of the British special forces and pilots who need better vision at night.

The refractive power of a lens is measured in diopters. “Vision changes by about 0.3 diopters at night,” he said. “If you are a sniper that’s critical. It is also important for long-distance lorry drivers, who need excellent night-time distance vision.”

Professor Stephen Trokel, who first introduced the Excimer Laser to eye surgery in 1983, says in the article that he’s operated on a leading soprano (reading music) and a catcher for the New York Yankees (tracking baseballs during night games) in his New York clinic.

The development also has implications for the elderly, since the eye’s ability to focus on close objects declines with age.

But senior citizens aren’t the only ones. Middle-aged professionals in Britain are opting for “monovision,” where one eye is customized for distance vision, the other for close reading.

Even U.S. presidents are into it:

Professor Marguerite McDonald, who performed the world’s first excimer laser treatment in New Orleans in 1987, said she had received several requests from US presidential candidates: “They never wanted to look helpless on the campaign trail because they couldn’t read their notes. They wanted to send a message that they were young.”

To find out whether you too can tailor your eyesight to your lifestyle with Laser Eye Surgery, call us FREE on 1800 DR EYES (1800 37 3937) to talk to one of our Patient Care Team now or Contact us Online for your free laser eye surgery assessment today.