Watch out, Lasik eye surgery (EyeWorld, October 2009)

AnEyesUpOriginally Lasik eye surgery took over PRK laser eye surgery, but in recent times, however, the scales have shifted in favor of the PRK laser eye surgery, EyeWorld reported.

PRK laser eye surgery has been increasing over the years while LASIK eye surgery volumes have been decreasing.

Dr Brian Boxer Wachler, director of Boxer Wachler Vision Institute in Los Angeles, says:” I think people have started to recognize that LASIK eye surgery has limits; more patients are being considered not good candidates for LASIK eye surgery…”.

A recent study, published in the August 2009 issue of the journal Cornea, concluded that PRK laser eye surgery may be a less invasive surgical approach for Myopia correction from a biomechanical viewpoint.

Scott Macrae, professor of ophthalmology and visual science, University of Rochester, New York, thinks the study makes sense. “When you do PRK laser eye surgery, you are less likely to weaken the cornea as much as with LASIK eye surgery because you are basically going less deep in terms of tissue removal and so there is more untouched collagen fibers with PRK laser eye surgery than with LASIK eye surgery in a comparable set of eyes.

The conservatism could be a factor in the changing landscape for refractive correction surgery. PRK volumes were found to have risen in 2008 compared with 2007 almost 50%, while the number of LASIK eye surgery cases is continuing to fall.

The study co-developer told Review of Ophthalmology, “PRK continues to go up as LASIK continues to go down.”The number of surgeons who perform LASIK eye surgery also have been dropping among American surgeons from 60% in 2000 to 41% in 2008.

(Extract from EyeWorld, The news Magazine of American Society for Cataracts and Refractive Surgery, October 2009.)

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