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3 posts from April 2008

April 29, 2008

Newsweek Article Touts LASIK Alternatives

Lauran Neergaard writes a very informative and timely article in this week's Newsweek titled: Lasik wories? Some may see better with alternatives

This article discusses the fact that through pervasive advertising many patients forget that LASIK is surgery and that perfect vision is guaranteed. Dr. Jayne Weiss, chair of the FDA advisory panel is quoted as saying:

LASIK is not a commodity, but it is being sold as a commodity.
I think she hits the nail on the head. It is very important for perspective patients to do their research and pick a surgeon based on outcomes and clinical experience and not on the best price.

As stated in the article, not everyone is an ideal LASIK candidate. One should not be pushing the envelope. If one is not an ideal candidate, alternative surgeries may provide superior results, and at times, no surgery at all (meaning continued eyeglass or contact lens use) may be the best alternative.

Alternative refractive surgeries include:
1. Surface ablations including PRK, LASEK, and EpiLASIK
2. Phakic IOL
3. Refractive Lens exchange
4. Refractive cataract surgery

These and other procedures are discussed in the article and will be addressed in future blog entries.

It certainly behooves the future refractive surgery patient to seek the advice of a surgeon who offers all these procedures, and not just LASIK. This will ensure that the correct procedure will be paired with the apropiate refractive condition.

The full Newsweek article can be viewed a:

April 28, 2008

Interesting Story on World News Tonight

An interesting story appeared on World News Tonight on 4/27/2008. Doctors at the Scheie Eye Institute in Philadelphia are using gene therapy to treat genetic retinal disease. The early results are encouraging, and the potential to treat other retinal diseases such as macular degeneration and retinitis pigmentosa are possible. This is some very exciting stuff.

The link to the video is:

April 27, 2008


Welcome to EyeCare 20/20's new LASIK blog. Our goal is to be an informative source of current issues in the refractive surgery market. We hope that this blog will serve as an educational source to those interested in refractive surgery. We welcome your comments, questions, and concerns.

For our first entry, one can't help but notice all the news stories this past week concerning the FDA's recent hearings concerning LASIK complications. To quote a story in the AP:

The FDA agrees with eye surgeons' studies that only about 5 percent of patients are dissatisfied with Lasik. What's not clear is exactly how many of those suffer lasting severe problems and how many just didn't get quite as clear vision as they had expected.
The most meticulous studies come from the military, where far less than 1 percent of Lasik recipients suffer serious side effects, said Dr. David Tanzer, the Navy's Medical Corps commander. That research prompted Lasik to be cleared last year both for Navy aviators and NASA astronauts.

For the full article:

What this all tells us is that LASIK is indeed surgery, and with it comes both risks and rewards. The key is to make sure one is a very good candidate for the procedure, thus decreasing the risks while increasing the rewards. Be sure to seek the advice of an experienced LASIK surgeon, with years of experience, and an excellant track record!