Should I Do Wavefront or Standard Laser Vision Correction?
by Craig Bindi, MD
In 2002, the FDA approved Wavefront technology as a more precise method of correcting vision compared to Standard LASIK techniques. Wavefront laser technology is the most precise and customized method of laser vision correction available today. Published clinical studies have demonstrated that wavefront technology results in a higher percentage of “20/20 or better” vision, more crisp night vision, lower re-treatment rates and better contrast vision compared to standard laser technology. Publication source: Ophthalmology 2008; 115:1249-1261.
Is Wavefront Technology always necessary?
While most patients can benefit from the additive effects of customized wavefront technology, for some it may be more advantageous than for others. Many times per week I am asked, “But, do I NEED to opt for wavefront technology, or will the less expensive standard technology be an adequate option for me?” Ultimately, this is a clinical judgment that is based on multiple factors. For patients with larger corrections, larger pupils or pre-existing night vision problems, wavefront LASIK has significant proven benefits over standard LASIK (and the additional procedure cost is especially advisable). However, based on our real world experience, Standard LASIK and Standard Epi-LASIK may still a very good option for other patients with very basic vision problems and satisfactory night vision.
I may especially recommend Wavefront/Custom laser vision correction if you:
Have a larger correction of nearsightedness or astigmatism
Have large pupil size measurements
Are unsatisfied with current night vision (i.e. glare, halos, or star-bursting)
Are seeking the best possible vision results/most advanced technology
Standard laser vision correction may still be a very good option if you:
Have a mild or moderate amount of nearsightedness or astigmatism
Have normal pupil size measurements
Have minimal “high order” aberration measurements
Are currently satisfied with your overall vision with glasses & contacts
** In 2000, I personally underwent Standard LASIK (before wavefront technology was
available), and I still see better than 20/20! However, if I were to have the procedure performed
today, I would choose the most advanced technology available.