Does the Type of “Blade-Free” LASIK Really Matter?
Submitted by Dr. Dean Dornic on Sun 08/08/2010 - 11:15
In the United States there are two main manufacurers of lasers to create LASIK flaps. Consumers may recognize the terms “iLASIK” and “Z-LASIK” as descriptors of a blade-free LASIK procedure and wonder what the difference is. Both lasers boast improvements in flap thickness precision but only the IntraLase has certain safety features that prevent certain flap complications.
Some of the safety features that the i-LASIK procedure has that the Z-LASIK procedure does not have include:
- True customization of flap parameters
- Ability to adjust the diameter and centration of the flap on a presurgical treatment planning screen before the flap is made.
- Ability to create a “manhole” configuration to the flap to enable a snugger fit and less likelihood of flap displacement.
- Visualization of the flap as it is being created to allow for surgeon intervention.
- Ability to resume or restart the procedure if there is an interruption for any reason.
The manufacturers of the laser that is used in the Z-LASIK procedure tout their laser as the “most advanced” laser: presumably a reference to the fact that it is more portable. Of course, the patient doesn’t really care that the laser is easily moved from room to room, they are more interested in safety. The iLASIK procedure, for the reasons stated above, is the LASIK procedure most likely to result in a complication free procedure and achieve an excellent level of vision.
LASIK consumers are advised to do their homework before choosing a particular technology and understand what is really behind the “catch phrases” used in advertising. For the safest LASIK procedure, iLASIK is indisputably superior. For LASIK patients in the Raleigh area, the Laser Eye Center of Carolina should be your destination for genuine iLASIK.