Stagnant LASIK market?
Considering the aforementioned abundance of corrective technologies, the question arises regarding the status of LASIK and whether this market seems to be stagnant in the United States.
“The number of patients undergoing LASIK will increase eventually because the number of refractive patients is increasing overall,” Dr. Gulani said. “At the same time the number of refractive choices also has increased, and hence, the number of patients choosing LASIK may appear to have remained stagnant.
“Patients are now candidates for phakic implants, presbyopic corneal inlays, CXL, and refractive lens exchange rather than LASIK across the board,” he added. “So the patients that choose only LASIK are now distributed among the additional choices. This seems to be a more realistic way of evaluating the marketplace.”
It will be interesting to see the effect of topography-guided LASIK, which was approved by the FDA, on the activity in this market.
“This brings something new to the field,” said Dr. Hersh, noting the “superb” results that patients are attaining.
Another potential game changer is approval of the SMILE procedure.
“We are not seeing a lot of interest in this procedure yet in the United States, but with time, I believe we will see it evolving and being embraced more by surgeons,” Dr. Hersh predicted.
Peter Hersh, MD
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Dr. Hersh holds stock in Avedro.