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LASIK Technology: Why IntraLase Is Better Than the Microkeratome

By Andrew Holzman on November 13, 2015

An eye treated by a laserDr. Andrew E. Holzman is a leading laser eye surgeon serving the greater Washington DC area. Using advanced technology and the latest surgical techniques, his team has helped countless patients experience great eyesight through custom LASIK surgery.

We've received a number of questions from patients about all-laser LASIK/IntraLase LASIK and whether or not it is better than traditional LASIK surgery. It's ultimately a question about whether or not a laser is better than a microkeratome. Let's compare the two right now.

What Is the Microkeratome?

A microkeratome is a special surgical instrument that was common for traditional LASIK surgery procedures. The microkeratome has a special oscillating blade that helps in the creation of a corneal flap. When it is used, a surgeon could then lift up the flap that has been created and reshape the cornea.

The microkeratome is a precise instrument, though as you are about to read, technological advances have made a bladeless approach to LASIK a viable (and in a number of cases superior) choice.

What is IntraLase?

IntraLase is one way of referring to an all-laser LASIK procedure. Rather than using a microkeratome to create the corneal flap, a laser is used instead. This precise surgical laser allows surgeons to create a flap in the cornea just as a microkeratome would. The difference, of course, is that there is no physical instrument necessary to achieve this.

Is All-laser LASIK Better Than Traditional LASIK?

There are a few reason why all-laser LASIK is superior to the LASIK of the past.

  • Reduced Chance of Infection – The possibility of infection is already very low with LASIK surgery, though all-laser LASIK makes it even lower since there is no physical contact required with the eye itself.

  • A Greater Level of Precision – Thanks to the use of IntraLase technology, a laser eye surgeon is able to create a much more precise and reliable flap that is easy to lift up and set down.

  • Less Chance of Human Error – Given the reliance on lasers rather than physical tools, a laser eye surgery is able to be performed with less chance of human error during the treatment process. This all means greater safety and reduced risk.

Other Benefits of All-Laser LASIK

In addition to the above, all-laser LASIK helps reduce the possibility of flap complication. Flap complications occur when the flap is set back down and does not heal properly. Since the flap is consistently more precise and reliable thanks to IntraLase technology, issues with flap complications tend to be less likely thanks to all-laser LASIK.

Eye Care Technology Will Only Continue to Improve

While there are occasional instances in which a microkeratome may be recommended rather than IntraLase technology, all-laser LASIK is, by and large, the way of the future. As technology continues to improve and surgical techniques become refined, our team will do its best to remain at the forefront and help patients experience the best possible vision.

Learn More About All-Laser LASIK Surgery

For more information about LASIK and how it can help you have much better eyesight, be sure to contact our laser eye surgery and vision correction centers today. Dr. Andrew E. Holzman and his entire team look forward to your visit and helping you achieve excellent vision.

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