"Bladeless" LASIK Uses a Second Laser Not a Blade
In 1999, the Food and Drug Administration approved
the IntraLase Bladeless LASIK technique to correct eye vision.
In 2001 the IntraLASIK procedure was introduced onto the U.S.
market, and to date over 1 million successful IntraLase procedures
have been performed. The main benefit towards the IntraLASIK procedure
over other LASIK and PRK procedures is that IntraLASIK uses a
laser to create a flap in the cornea instead of a blade. The entire
surgery is conducted with the use of lasers; no blades are used
During the IntraLASIK procedure, a laser using
rapid pulses of laser light are used to create a flap in the upper
surfaces of the cornea. The laser light creates tiny microscopic
bubbles in the cornea layer; the location of these bubbles is
not the same for everyone, and the area in which the laser creates
the bubbles is determined by an ophthalmologist before the surgery
begins. After the layer of bubbles has been created, the surgeon
is able to gently fold back the layer of tissue resting on top
of the bubbles. After the layer is folded back, an excimer laser
is used to shape the cornea in order to correct vision; the excimer
laser is used as well in LASIK, LASEK, and PRK surgeries.
The use of a laser instead of a blade to remove
the upper corneal layer has a number of benefits to the patient.
A cut on the cornea using a blade can sometimes lead to scarring,
postoperative vision quality problems, longer healing time, increased
postoperative pain, and lower quality of overall postoperative
vision. The IntraLASIK procedure helps to avoid surgical complications
that occur when a blade is used during an eye corrective procedure.
Independent studies have shown that patients who undergo IntraLASIK
procedures, as opposed to LASIK procedures, reported a better
overall quality of vision.
The IntraLASIK procedure allows doctors to independently
tailor the dimensions of the corneal flap for improved results.
Some patients who have been rejected as LASIK surgical candidates
due to thin corneas may qualify for IntraLASIK instead. IntraLASIK
patients report a reduced incidence of postoperative pain and
haze, and a quicker recovery of vision.