Take-home message: For the Aker Kasten Eye Center, the surgical benefits of switching to femtosecond laser cataract surgery have surpassed any initial financial concerns.
Boca Raton, FL—For several years, Aker Kasten Eye Center has been interested in the use of the femtosecond laser in conjunction with cataract surgery. Despite claims made by companies developing these laser platforms, the practice was skeptical and reluctant to acquire a system.
Early on, the companies were targeting the premium IOL market. Many studies touted improved IOL centration compared with manual.1-3
It was postulated that a perfectly round and centered capsulorhexis would improve outcomes because lens placement would be more precise. The practice doubted this claim because of experience observing capsule fibrosis and contraction during healing in the postoperative period.
Though comfortable with the ability to produce a near-perfect rhexis, the practice had seen that a perfect circle can become an oval at the time of implantation. There was no reason to believe this would be different whether the rhexis was made by hand or using a femtosecond laser.
In addition, the practice had seen late healing cause changes in lens position when capsule contraction occurred. Despite this, the practice continued to hear about this new paradigm for cataract surgery. The concept of ensuring a more secure final lens position and resultant better refractive outcome for patients seeking premium IOLs was the driving force in this marketing effort.