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INNOVATIONS in refractive surgery for myopes, hyperopes, and presbyopes bent on improving their vision are generating debate about the advantages of new laser techniques, as well as the potential for billions in revenue.
Final Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval last month of an excimer laser to treat nearsightedness by reshaping the cornea is expected to unleash a flood of consumer demand for photorefractive keratotomy (PRK).
Patients who are farsighted, have other refractive errors, or just prefer an alternative to zapping away their myopia might choose insertable devices and lenses that also reshape the cornea or create a bifocal effect without the use of eyeglasses.
"We're just entering the era where refractive surgery is becoming well accepted," said Richard Lindstrom, MD, medical director at Phillips Eye Institute Center for Teaching and Research in Minneapolis, Minn, during a Research to Prevent Blindness (RPB) science writers seminar in Orlando, Fla.
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