Demystifying “Custom LASIK”: Is All LASIK Truly Custom to Your Eyes?
LASIK has revolutionized the world of vision correction. Millions of people around the globe have bid farewell to glasses and contact lenses through this popular and effective procedure. LASIK offers the promise of sharper vision and greater convenience. But, as with any medical procedure, it’s essential to understand the different variations of LASIK and what they mean for your vision.
Recently, the term “Custom LASIK” has become a buzzword in the field of refractive eye surgery. However, there seems to be some confusion about what exactly “custom” means in the context of LASIK. Many people wonder whether all LASIK procedures are custom-tailored to their eyes. Let’s demystify the concept of “Custom LASIK” and clarify how it differs from LASIK.
The Basics of LASIK
Before diving into the custom aspect, it’s important to understand the fundamental process of LASIK. In standard LASIK, a surgeon uses a laser to reshape the cornea, which is the clear front surface of the eye. This reshaping is done to correct refractive errors such as myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness), and astigmatism. The goal is to ensure that light entering the eye is properly focused on the retina, which is essential for clear vision.
In LASIK, the surgeon typically relies on measurements of your eye’s prescription to determine how much corneal tissue to remove during the procedure. The outcome is generally effective for a wide range of patients but may not address all the unique aspects of an individual’s visual system.
Custom LASIK – A New Level of Personalization
Some surgeons refer to “Custom LASIK,” as an alternative name for “Wavefront LASIK” or “Topography guided LASIK”. But what is truly custom LASIK?
Differences in LASIK Technology
- How it works: Wavefront LASIK doesn’t only consider the corneal surface. Instead, it looks at how light travels through the entire eye, addressing the entire optical pathway. The technology creates a 3D map of the eye, capturing unique imperfections that can cause vision issues.
- Comprehensive: This method addresses both corneal irregularities and other aberrations in the eye.
- Reduced Halos & Glare: Patients undergoing wavefront LASIK are less likely to experience issues like glare and halos around lights at night.
- How it works: Topography-Guided LASIK, uses detailed mapping of the cornea’s surface. This mapping detects even the minutest of irregularities on the corneal surface.
- Precise: Custom LASIK provides a highly personalized treatment tailored to your unique eye structure.
- Addresses Irregularities: It’s beneficial for patients with irregular corneal surfaces or those who’ve had previous refractive surgeries.
EX500 is a type of excimer laser used in LASIK procedures. In addition to treating nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism, the EX500 Allegretto excimer laser was specifically designed to address certain concerns that had remained unsolved by its predecessors. It is known for its rapid ablation (tissue removal) rate and precision. The EX500 laser is capable of reshaping the cornea with high accuracy, making it a popular choice for LASIK surgeons. It allows for quick and efficient treatments, reducing the time the cornea is exposed to the laser, which can enhance patient comfort. Parkhurst NuVision uses the EX500.
- Efficient treatment times: The average laser treatment time is less than 10 seconds due to its best-in-class 500 Hz laser ablation speed. Prior excimer lasers would take up to 90 seconds to complete the treatment, thereby exposing the cornea to dehydration and over-corrections. The EX500’s rapid repetition rate shortens procedure times to improves accuracy.
- Best alignment technology: Equipped with iris registration, the EX500’s multi-dimensional eye tracker is unmatched in its ability to instantaneously track eye movements over 1000 times per second. If there is a large movement, the EX500 will briefly pause until perfect alignment is reestablished.
- Most capable: The EX500 is the only excimer laser FDA-approved for all customized treatments. For patients with larger pupils, the EX500 is capable of treating true optical zones of up to 8mm to minimize postoperative halos and glare.
- Most predictable: A fastest laser treatment combined with the most advanced eye tracker AND the best laser alignment system add up for the most predictable vision results.
What LASIK is Right for You?
Which option you choose depends on your individual needs, preferences, and your eye surgeon’s recommendation. Parkhurst NuVision uses the latest technology with the EX500 which is often an excellent choice for individuals with more complex vision issues or those who are seeking the highest possible quality of vision.
In the world of vision correction, “Custom LASIK” represents a significant step forward in tailoring the LASIK procedure to the unique characteristics of your eyes.
To determine which option is right for you, it’s crucial to consult with a qualified eye surgeon. They can assess your specific vision needs and help you make an informed decision about the best LASIK procedure for you. Ultimately, whatever custom procedure you choose, the goal is the same: to free you from the limitations of glasses and contact lenses, giving you the gift of clear, crisp vision.
Be sure to talk to one of our doctors about not only the benefits of vision correction, but also any risks of vision correction that may pertain to your individual needs and circumstances.