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Monday, April 11, 2011

What Has Wavefront Technology To Do With Lasik Surgery?

By Owen Jones

Lasik surgery has greatly improved the sight of millions of people worldwide. It has converted the visually impaired into sighted individuals who are capable of seeing their children again and contributing to the family's earnings by working. Two things that millions considered they would never be able to do again.

However, Lasik eye surgery has not been sitting on its laurels. Far from it, Lasik surgery techniques are being improved all the time. One such enhancement is Wavefront Technology. Wavefront Technology with relation to Lasik eye surgery is used to more precisely map the patient's eyeball, which makes more exact surgery possible.

This is of immense importance because eyeballs are not all the same shape. They are like hands, superficially they all look the same, but once you get down to detail, they are not. There are all shapes sizes and proportions. The same goes for eyes.

The better the map of the eye, the more chance that the surgeon has of giving you the best vision they can, in relation to the precise problems that you have in your particular case. Wavefront Technology assists the surgeon accomplish this.

Wavefront Technology is really a technology that has been modified from astronomy. in astronomical telescopes it is crucial that the lenses are as flawless as they can be, because at high magnification, even the very least impairment would lead to colossal distortions, which in turn would make the telescope practically useless.

Astronomers were using this technology in the 1970's, so it was already quite advanced when some bright spark saw that it could be adapted for use in eye surgery too. Wavefront Technology was born and taken on board by Lasik and other eye surgeons with great expectations.

In fact, the bright spark who noticed the possible value of this piece of astronomical technology was a German doctor called Josef Bille who began using it in his practice.

He gradually enhanced and adapted the sensors and announced it to the Lasik manufacturers in 1997. This in turn allowed the manufacturers of Lasik equipment to adapt Wavefront Technology to their own apparatus.

Wavefront Technology is extremely complicated in design and technology but also highly simple to understand. The Wavefront machine sends a flat sheet of light (called a wavefront) through the eye to the retina, which reflects it back to the Wavefront machine.

The Wavefront machine compares the two, measures the imperfections, decides what has to be done to correct them and guides the laser to the correct spot in order to accomplish the corrections. As simple as that!

However, the geniuses who created and developed Wavefront Technology did not give up there. They have their machine send in multiple wavefronts from multiple angles so that the computer can build up a three dimensional picture for even more precision.

There are now well over 60 patterns that can be automatically corrected by a Lasik laser guided by Wavefront Technology. So, if you have any concerns with long or short sightedness, make an appointment to see your Lasik surgeon as soon as they can.

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