Father Waclaw Szuniewicz initiated the beginning of refractive surgery. He was a missionary from Poland and his pioneering work in reshaping the cornea paved the way too many other inventions. One of the offshoots of Father Szuniewicz’s work was the invention of refractive keratoplasty and the introduction of keratomileusis, which later made way for a more sophisticated technique named keratophakia.
The invention of radial keratotomy is arguably the onset of corneal surface reshaping techniques using small flaps. Svyatoslov N. Fyodorov invented this method, which was a marked improvement from the previously held procedure of effecting incisions from within the eye. In radial keratotomy, radial incisions were applied to the corneal anterior surface, thus changing the corneal shape.
Laser vision correction started in the 1970’s with the invention of the excimer laser. Stephen L. Trokel, a researcher at the Columbia University borrowed one excimer laser and performed experimental laser eye correction on animal cadavers. He then started experiments on human corpses. His studies eventually led him to perform these procedures on living animals such as rabbits and monkeys.
PRK or photorefractive keratectomy was first performed on a 60-year old patient. The malignant melanoma had grown a black spot on one of her eyes. She requested scientists to experiment with this eye before considering its removal. PRK was performed on her eye. The success of PRK meant that Canada in the year 1991 approved the use of excimer laser for performing PRK surgeries. Subsequently the US accepted the same in 1995.
PRK technique zap
The foundations of LASIK were laid by European doctors in 1990. These two eye doctors built upon the PRK technique to create a more sophisticated variant which would eventually become LASIK. The technique was loosely called as ‘flap and zap’. A thin blade was used to portion-off an ultra-thin flap in the corneal region. The tissue underneath was zapped. The flap was then replaced. The method became the conceptual technique which eventually became a mature and safe one called LASIK.
LASIK received another recognition in 1999 when the wavefront analysis technique was invented. Wavefront analysis mapped a patient’s cornea. Corneal maps were analogically similar to a person’s fingerprints. Excimer lasers used corneal maps to precisely reshape patients’ corneas. Wavefront analysis became closely coupled with LASIK in 2002 following the FDA approval.
The same year, LASIK went ahead of its times with the introduction of bladeless technology. Femtosecond lasers replaced blades to create corneal flaps. These lasers could create precise flaps with the required depth and diameter.
Currently, premier eye clinics such as Houston LASIK are not only at the forefront of innovation but technology adoption. LASIK laser eye surgery is currently the safest procedure and the most effective, thanks to thousands of successful procedures by Houston Lasik. The future looks bright for this technique, and its applications are increasing by the day. This medical eye procedure has the potential to completely transform the lives of millions of patients not just in the US but across the world. It is highly desirable that anyone seeking a positive change in their eyesight and lifestyle seek consultation with a Houston specialist immediately.
Houston Lasik leads in providing premium LASIK technologies to Houston, Sugar Land, and the surrounding region. The center’s award-winning medical director introduced revolutionary technologies such as iLASIK to the region. This technology is used by NASA astronauts, Navy SEALS and Air Force fighter pilots. At Houston Lasik, you can now receive the same treatment. For more information, please call (281) 240-0478.