• Excimer laser photorefractive keratectomy, developed to perform radially symmetric ablations to correct myopic or hyperopic refractive errors, was used to perform toric ablations designed to correct cylindrical errors. An expanding slit was used to flatten the cornea in the steep meridian. Four contact lens—intolerant patients underwent this procedure for correction of astigmatism (two patients after penetrating keratoplasty, one patient after corneal ulcer, and one patient with naturally occurring high astigmatism). In each patient, surgery reduced the regular component of the astigmatism; residual irregular astigmatism limited spectacle-corrected acuity in one patient. All patients experienced a shift in spherical equivalent toward hyperopia. Toric ablations with the excimer laser appear to represent a promising strategy for the correction of compound myopic astigmatism that does not rely on creation of deep corneal incisions, excisions, or compression sutures.
McDonnell PJ, Moreira H, Clapham TN, D'Arcy J, Munnerlyn CR. Photorefractive Keratectomy for AstigmatismInitial Clinical Results. Arch Ophthalmol. 1991;109(10):1370-1373. doi:10.1001/archopht.1991.01080100050041