Hemidivisional vector planning to reduce and regularize irregular astigmatism by laser treatment

Graefes Arch Clin Exp Ophthalmol. 2022 Sep;260(9):3095-3106. doi: 10.1007/s00417-022-05604-x. Epub 2022 Mar 9.


Purpose: To demonstrate how hemidivisional vector planning of refractive laser treatments of astigmatism can be used to directly address idiopathic corneal irregular astigmatism that has an asymmetrical, non-orthogonal bow tie topography appearance.

Design: Case study.

Methods: The cornea is conceptually divided into two hemidivisions along the flat meridian of the corneal topographic astigmatism (CorT), which means that each hemidivision will approximately correspond to one lobe of the asymmetric, non-orthogonal topographic bow tie. An astigmatism reduction treatment can then be planned separately for each hemidivision using the vector planning technique, based on both its two hemidivisional CorT measures and common manifest refractive cylinder. The remaining irregularity is then regularized, and the junctional zone smoothed across the flat meridian. The final intended treatment thus combines hemidivisional astigmatism reduction and regularization of the corneal astigmatism and spherical refractive error in one treatment application. This could be applied to LASIK, PRK, SMILE, and Transepithelial PRK procedures using Designer Cornea® software.

Results: A theoretical treatment profile is derived from an actual example of a cornea with idiopathic asymmetric non-orthogonal astigmatism. The three steps of the derivation are as follows: (i) astigmatism reduction through the use of the vector planning technique; (ii) regularization, and (iii) smoothing across the hemidivisional midline.

Conclusions: Hemidivisional vector planning treatments could potentially both reduce and regularize asymmetric non-orthogonal astigmatism. These treatments can be systematically customized to account for qualitative and quantitative differences between the two corneal hemidivisions at the same time as correction of coexistent myopia or hyperopia.

Keywords: Astigmatism reduction and regularization; Corneal topographic astigmatism (CorT); Irregular astigmatism; Vector planning.

MeSH terms

  • Astigmatism*
  • Cornea
  • Corneal Diseases*
  • Corneal Topography
  • Humans
  • Keratomileusis, Laser In Situ*
  • Lasers
  • Lasers, Excimer
  • Refraction, Ocular