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Improved Laser Surgery Good for Eyes

Wavefront-guided LASIK improves clarity, glare problems

MONDAY, March 1, 2004 (HealthDayNews) -- Wavefront-guided LASIK provides much improved contrast sensitivity compared with standard LASIK, says an Israeli study in the March issue of Ophthalmology.

Contrast sensitivity refers to the eyes' ability to detect subtle shades of gray between an object and its background.

In this study, 24 eyes of 13 people were treated with wavefront-guided LASIK and 22 eyes of 12 people were treated with standard LASIK. One month after surgery, the people who received wavefront-guided LASIK had an 88 percent improvement in contrast sensitivity measurements, compared with 40 percent in those who received standard LASIK.

The study also found uncorrected visual acuity of 20/20 or better was achieved by 72 percent of the people in the wavefront group and by 70 percent of those who received standard LASIK.

"LASIK has a high rate of improving uncorrected visual acuity, but it can degrade the quality of vision, resulting in reports of reduced night vision clarity, glare and halos. This is the result of reduced contrast sensitivity, which is greater among patients with high degrees of nearsightedness," study author Dr. Igor Kaiserman, an ophthalmologist at Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem, says in a prepared statement.

"One reason for reduced contrast sensitivity is the increased higher-order distortions caused by the LASIK procedure. Because wavefront measurement provides a more precise and detailed map of the visual system's distortions, wavefront-guided LASIK reduces these distortions, resulting in an improved quality of vision," Kaiserman says.

More information

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission has more about LASIK.

SOURCE: American Academy of Ophthalmology, news release, March 1, 2004
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