Laser Vision Correction in Treating Myopia

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Abstract

Myopia is a generally benign refractive error with an increasing prevalence worldwide. It can be corrected temporarily with glasses and contact lenses and permanently with laser vision correction. The 2 main procedures currently being performed for myopia correction are photorefractive keratectomy and laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis. Each technique has its advantages, but they appear to yield similar visual outcomes 1 year after surgery. Laser vision correction for myopia was considered a paradigm shift because healthy eyes could now undergo a surgical procedure to permanently and safely correct the error by altering the center of the cornea, which was previously off limits because of the potential for loss of transparency. Customized ablation using wavefront aberrometry and its optimized profiles were created to correct higher-order aberrations and give more vision quality to patients. Topography-guided ablation, initially used for complex retreatments, shows potential to make vision even better than glasses and contact lenses in a recent study on previously untreated eyes. One major concern is to identify corneas that are at risk of developing ectasia after the procedure. Topographic and tomographic screening indices have been implemented clinically, but there is still much to learn about corneal biomechanics. A more recently developed procedure for myopia correction is small-incision lenticule extraction, in which a lenticule is created in the cornea’s stroma with a femtosecond laser and extracted through a small corneal incision. Long-term outcomes and new complication risks need to be better understood as this procedure develops.

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