Femtosecond laser corneal refractive surgery

Ron Kurtz, Greg Spooner, Karin Sletten, Kim Yen, Samir Sayegh, Frieder Loesel, Christopher Horvath, Hsia Hua Liu, Victor Elner, Delia Cabrera, Marie Helene Meunier, Zachary Sacks, Tibor Juhasz

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


We evaluated the efficacy, safety, and stability of femtosecond laser intrastromal refractive procedures in ex vivo and in vivo models. When compared with longer pulsewidth nanosecond or picosecond laser pulses, femtosecond laser-tissue interactions are characterized by significantly smaller and more deterministic photodisruptive energy thresholds, as well as reduced shock waves and smaller cavitation bubbles. We utilized a highly reliable, all-solid-state femtosecond laser system for all studies to demonstrate clinical practicality. Contiguous tissue effects were achieved by scanning a 5 μm focused laser spot below the corneal surface at pulse energies of approximately 2-4 microjoules. A variety of scanning patterns was used to perform three prototype procedures in animal eyes; corneal flap cutting, keratomileusis, and intrastromal vision correction. Superior dissection and surface quality results were obtained for lamellar procedures (corneal flap cutting and keratomileusis). Preliminary in vivo evaluation of intrastromal vision correction in a rabbit model revealed consistent and stable pachymetry changes, without significant inflammation or loss of corneal transparency. We conclude that femtosecond laser technology may be able to perform a variety of corneal refractive procedures with high precision, offering advantages over current mechanical and laser devices and techniques.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)209-219
Number of pages11
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - 1999
Externally publishedYes
EventProceedings of the 1999 Ophthalmic Technologies IX - San Jose, CA, USA
Duration: Jan 23 1999Jan 25 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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