Laser eye surgery (LASIK).What is the history of laser correction?

Laser eye surgery (LASIK).What is the history of laser correction?

Laser eye surgery (LASIK) is the most popular method of laser vision correction in the world according to which several million operations are performed every year. Lasik is the abbreviation of the full name of the operation “Laser Assisted In Situ Keratomileusis”, proposed by the Greek doctor Pallikaris back in 1990.To date, laser eye surgery (LASIK) is the safest, hi-tech, and time-proven method of laser vision correction, which allows obtaining high visual acuity and stability of results. Laser eye surgery (LASIK) is used to correct myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism, allowing patients to get rid of glasses and contact lenses.

History of laser correction

Approximately, until the middle of the 20th century for people who had farsightedness or shortsightedness, the only way to bring vision back to normal was wearing glasses. However, ophthalmologists from different countries were constantly looking for other ways to improve vision. Back in 1939, an ophthalmologist from Japan Sato suggested the method of operating the eye by applying insects to the cornea of the eye (radial keratotomy). The development of this method stopped the frequent appearance of corneal opacities in the operated eye and other postoperative complications. In 1949, Dr. Baker suggested that the cornea of the eye is an object that is suitable for correcting refractive anomalies. To confirm his rightness, he conducted a series of experiments, during which he cut off part of the cornea, then frozen it, grinded it, and gave it a new shape. In this way, he changed the strength of refraction. Subsequently, this procedure was called keratomileusis (keratomileus).In 1967, Pureskin in his works described the idea of creating a corneal valve and removing from the center of the cornea part of the eye. In subsequent periods, this idea was picked up and developed by other doctors. In 1972, a physician from the USSR Svyatoslav Fyodorov continued research and improved the technique of surgery, which gave hope but still did not give guarantees of the occurrence of postoperative complications. The methods of refractive surgery put forward the maximum requirements for safety and accuracy.

In 1976, the famous IBM Corporation created the first full-scale excimer laser. However, the first laser eye surgery (LASIK) for vision correction was carried out in Berlin only in 1985. Photorefractive keratectomy (PRK) is one of the first methods of laser eye surgery, which was introduced into a wide medical practice. In 1989, the first operation was carried out by this method. So, more than half a century experience accumulated, technology was developed, equipment was improved, which subsequently led to the appearance of PRK, and later to laser eye surgery (LASIK). Laser vision correction firmly entered the life of people. Restoration of vision with this method has become an innovation that has been almost immediately widespread in Western countries. A lot for the development of the LASIK method was made by the Greek doctor-ophthalmologist Pallikaris. He developed the technique that is now used in all eye clinics in the world. Pallikaris gave it the name “LASIK”. The laser eye surgery (LASIK) was finally finalized by 1991, and at the same time, LASIK patients underwent surgery in the USA and Germany. To date, ophthalmological centers in 53 countries around the world are using laser eye surgery LASIK for vision correction. The gradual decline in the price of this procedure makes it increasingly accessible to all people.


The method of Lasik, although considered an operation, it is so difficult to call it such. To conduct laser eye surgery (LASIK) need only 10-15 minutes with local drip anesthesia while laser exposure lasts no more than 40 seconds. Most people achieve 100% visual acuity after laser eye surgery (LASIK) and sometimes more. Do not forget that the main task of LASIK is to save the patient from wearing glasses and contact lenses. Therefore, visual acuity less than 100% is also considered a good result.

Why did this technique become so popular? Laser eye surgery (LASIK) has a number of advantages over other refractive operations:

  • Rapid recovery of vision
  • Lack of pain
  • Short operation time
  • Absence of stitches and scars
  • Stability of results

Laser eye surgery (LASIK) was created using mechanical micro keratomes, which have an ideal quality of the surface of the cut of the corneal flap. The latest modification of this technique is called Super LASIK or personalized vision correction. The difference from the standard LASIK method is that individual features of the structure of the patient’s cornea are used to correct vision. The development of the Lasik method continues today, when new generations of lasers are emerging, more and more accurate and fast. In the vast majority of cases, the use of the Lasik vision correction technology gives tremendous results: patients acquire 100% vision after 93-95% of operations.


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