Q: Why does LASIK require two steps?
A: When laser vision correction was performed without the corneal flap, as in PRK (photorefractive keratectomy), patients experienced considerable discomfort and a delay in visual acuity. So in LASIK, the surgeon first creates a micro-thin flap of corneal tissue and folds it back to
prepare the eye for the second step, where an excimer laser is used on the inner cornea to correct vision. This two-step process allows for rapid visual recovery with little or no patient discomfort, and is credited with the popularity and growth of the procedure worldwide.
Q: What is the NO BLADE LASIK procedure?
A: The NO BLADE LASIK procedure uses the VisuMax laser to complete the first step of the LASIK procedure. It is an advancement to make LASIK an all-laser procedure.
The NO BLADE LASIK procedure is noted for improving the safety and predictably of LASIK by replacing the hand-held oscillating microkeratome blade historically used in the first step.It has also been proven to provide for better than 20/20 visual outcomes, even among Custom/Wavefront patients. Today, the NO BLADE LASIK method is the technology of choice amongst leading LASIK surgeons and ophthalmic teaching institutions worldwide. The VisuMax Laser is the latest generation of a class of lasers known as femtosecond lasers, including the Intralase and FemtoLDV lasers.
Q: How does the corneal flap affect visual outcomes?
A: New studies reveal that the corneal flap has been widely underestimated for its affect on the visual outcome of LASIK Laser Vision Correction Eye Surgery. If the corneal surface is left with microscopic high and low spots, the precision of the excimer tissue ablation (step two) can be compromised. Eliminating even minute inaccuracies on the corneal surface improves the visual outcome of the procedure.
Surgeons have found statistically and clinically significant differences in the vision patients achieve when the femtosecond laser is used for corneal flap creation. The NO BLADE LASIK method goes beyond simply creating a safer, planar flap to preparing an optimal corneal architecture below the flap, providing for superior visual outcomes, even among Custom/Wavefront patients. The end result: fewer complications and better vision.
Q: Is this the same as the Customized/personalized procedure I have heard so much about?
A: No. Custom LASIK, also known variously as Z-LASIK, C-LASIK and Zyoptix generally refers to individualized visual diagnosis with technology called “wavefront,” which allows for customized, personalized treatment with the excimer laser. However, many LASIK surgeons combine Custom treatments and the NO BLADE LASIK method to give the most advanced procedure available.
In fact, new data reveals that the femtosecond laser helps Custom LASIK deliver on its promise of better visual outcomes beyond 20/20 to 20/15 and 20/12.5.
Q: Is traditional LASIK unsafe?
A: No. While traditional LASIK is a successful and relatively safe procedure, the NO BLADE LASIK method makes it safer by virtually eliminating the severe, sight-threatening complications of the microkeratome. The NO BLADE LASIK method is not only 100 times more accurate, but it also provides patients with superior visual outcomes. These facts are giving thousands of patients each month the confidence to proceed with laser vision correction.
Q: How do the visual outcomes of femtosecond LASIK compare to traditional blade-initiated LASIK?
A: Clinical studies confirm that patients achieve better vision with femtosecond LASIK. Data shows:
- More patients achieve 20/20 or better vision with the No Blade LASIK method.
- Patients stating a preference preferred the post-operative vision of their femtosecond-treated eye 3-to-1 over their blade-treated eye.
- The NO BLADE LASIK method creates fewer high- and low-order aberrations, associated with night glare and halos.
- NO BLADE LASIK patients have a reduced incidence of post-operative dry eye symptoms.
- NO BLADE LASIK patients required fewer enhancement procedures following LASIK.
- The precision of the femtosecond flap significantly reduces the incidence of post-operative induced astigmatism as compared to a microkeratome-created flap.
Q: Are the NO BLADE LASIK method benefits only achievable with Custom procedures?
A: No. The NO BLADE LASIK method improves the safety, precision and visual results of LASIK, whether you choose a standard or custom procedure.
Q: What about side effects such as transient light sensitivity and inflammation?
A: Femtosecond lasers have on rare occasions, some patients have reported transient light sensitivity (photophobia) following IntraLase-initiated LASIK due to a temporary inflammatory response. The NO BLADE LASIK method minimizes these problems, because the lower pulse energy and higher frequency of the VisuMax Laser, compared with the Intralase laser, allows a much gentler and tissue friendly procedure than Intralase LASIK.
Q: I have seen several advertisements for “All-Laser LASIK.” Is this NO BLADE LASIK?
A: Maybe. Contrary to popular belief, LASIK is not an “all-laser” procedure, due to the use of the microkeratome blade. The NO BLADE LASIK method is one of the few laser technologies available today for use in the first step of the LASIK procedure and only LASIK procedures that use the femtosecond laser can be considered “all-laser.”
Your doctor can explain the difference between other procedures that may be advertised as “all laser,” such as LASEK, PRK or epi-LASIK – all of which are surface ablation procedures. Because they are performed without creating a corneal flap, these procedures generally require longer healing time and frequently involve more discomfort and a delay in visual recovery.
Q: Is the NO BLADE LASIK method more expensive?
A: Yes. Most patients agree that the added level of safety and better vision offered by the NO BLADE LASIK method is worth the incremental cost. New Vision Laser Centers are leaders in the field of refractive laser surgery in India, and we continually evaluate advances in technology. We have determined that the NO BLADE LASIK method is the most sophisticated and accurate system available today for flap creation and have invested in the technology to sustain our superiority in patient care.
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