Iatrogenic keratectasia after laser in situ keratomileusis

J Refract Surg. 1998 May-Jun;14(3):312-7. doi: 10.3928/1081-597X-19980501-15.


Background: Lamellar refractive surgery reduces the biomechanical strength of the cornea which may lead to mechanical instability and keratectasia.

Methods: Three eyes had laser in situ keratomileusis (LASIK) for myopia from -10.00 to -13.50 D. The procedures were performed with two different wide-field excimer lasers and two different microkeratomes. The patients were followed up to 1 year after surgery.

Results: Central steep areas developed between 1 and 8 months after surgery. In contrast to conventional central steep islands, these showed rapid progression and were interpreted as keratectasia.

Conclusion: Iatrogenic keratectasia represents a complication after LASIK that may limit the range of myopia correction. Based on biomechanical considerations we recommend a residual corneal thickness of the stromal bed of at least 250 microm.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cornea / surgery*
  • Corneal Diseases / etiology*
  • Corneal Diseases / physiopathology
  • Corneal Topography
  • Corneal Transplantation / adverse effects*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Iatrogenic Disease
  • Laser Therapy / adverse effects*
  • Male
  • Myopia / surgery*
  • Visual Acuity