Perfect vision is something about which many of us only dream. In recent decades, that dream has evolved into a safe, affordable reality. LASIK eye surgery is one of the most common ways to treat inadequate vision. Using a highly advanced tool used to cut through the cornea, a surgeon can make the respective, necessary adjustments to correct vision, even render it perfect.
Now, the procedure has advanced beyond anticipation, foregoing the need for a blade at all. Bladeless LASIK, also known as IntraLase LASIK, uses only lasers to execute the corrective procedure.
Via Femtosecond computer technology, a surgeon guides an extremely high-speed laser to the exact location on a patient’s eye. The tissue is targeted precisely, then spliced at a molecular level to create a flap. To form the flap, a tiny pattern of overlapping bubbles is implanted just beneath the corneal surface by infrared energy. Then, below the flap, a second laser is used to make the needed adjustments to the corneal tissue. Because there is no heat or impact applied to nearby tissue, the flap returns evenly into place, falling naturally and requiring minimal healing time.
Besides its quicker healing times, IntraLase expands the opportunity for patients to undergo the refractive procedure. In the past, some patients have been denied LASIK procedures because their corneas were too thin. By using lasers instead of blades, the procedure is now suitable and successful for these patients.
Eliminating blades also eliminates rare complications that can arise- again, rarely- when using the blade. It is possible that when reshaping the cornea, the metal blade can cut uneven flap edges. As you can imagine, this would cause an abnormal corneal surface to form during the healing process. The irregularity could then spark a vision defect, such as an astigmatism. By not using a blade, IntraLase avoids this small margin of error possibility entirely.
When it comes to safety, IntraLase ranks very highly. Its biggest contender for the corrective procedure is PRK, the surface-focused version of the improvement. Both are safe, secure and affordable procedures. Some patients will rank more optimally for one that the other due to current eye conditions like corneal thickness. Whether your eye doctor is suggesting one surgery over the other, or leaving it up to you to choose, it is important to understand both procedures so that you can make the most informed decision about the future of your eyesight.
IntraLase vs PRK:
- IntraLase lasers through the cornea to adjust the underlying tissue. PRK removes a bit of the cornea, remedies the underlying tissue, then allows the epithelium to regenerate.
- IntraLase allows for faster healing times, which is why patients generally favor this procedure. IntraLase healing time is usually around 24 hours, whereas PRK requires three to four days of healing.
- PRK is technically safer than IntaLase because the treatment is performed directly on the surface of the cornea. No flap is made, so no flap complications are possible. The corneal tissue remains intact, so if future procedures are needed, the cornea is strong and stable.
- PRK might have fewer short-term post-op symptoms. Although immediate healing times with PRK are longer, there is some evidence that the short-term post-operative effects, such as dry eyes, are fewer.
Whether you are considering IntraLase or PRK, you are in incredibly safe hands. Both procedures rank at the top for safest experiences and both boast exceedingly successful outcomes for correcting eyesight. Being knowledgeable on your current eye health and the benefits of both procedures is important, and we encourage you to continue learning more. For more information on LASIK IntraLase, get in touch with your nearest Diamond Vision Center. Perfect vision is just around the corner!