nt wavefront LASIK systems have been approved by the FDA. Alcon's LADARWave Customized Ablation system was approved in October 2002, the VISX Custom Vue system was approved in May of this year and Bausch & Lomb's Zyoptix system recently received preliminary approval by the FDA's Advisory Panel.
Studies comparing results of wavefront LASIK with conventional LASIK found that 90 to 94 percent of patients receiving wavefront LASIK achieved visual acuity of 20/20 or better, whereas up to 80 percent of those receiving conventional LASIK achieved 20/20 or better.
However, wavefront LASIK may not be for everyone. Because wavefront LASIK removes more corneal tissue than conventional LASIK, patients with thin corneas may not be good candidates. Patients with high degrees of aberration, severely dry eyes, or conditions that affect the lens or vitreous fluid inside the eye also may not be good candidates. However, these patients may still be good candidates for conventional LASIK.
Academy spokesperson Daniel Durrie, MD, of Durrie Vision in Overland Park, Kan., said, "It is important that patients get a thorough eye examination by a reputable eye surgeon before undergoing any surgery. They need to understand the potential risks as well as benefits of the procedure."
In addition to refractive surgery, wavefront technology is also being used in the design of contact and intraocular lenses and to diagnose retinal conditions.
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American Academy of Ophthalmology
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