Laser in situ keratomileusis: literature review of a developing technique

J Cataract Refract Surg. 1998 Jul;24(7):989-1006. doi: 10.1016/s0886-3350(98)80056-4.


We reviewed papers published in peer-reviewed journals describing techniques and results of laser in situ keratomileusis (LASIK) and summarized the instruments used, nomograms, preoperative and postoperative refractions, predictability, outcome, safety, and complications. We performed a similar review of abstracts published in the abstract books of the 1996 meeting of the International Society of Refractive Surgery, the 1997 meeting of the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology, and the 1997 meeting of the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery. The number of LASIK and photorefractive keratectomy (PRK) patients described in the abstracts were sorted by city. Mean weighted latitudes were calculated and compared for each procedure. The mean preoperative refraction in the papers was -12.59 diopters (D), which was statistically higher than that in the abstracts, -8.71 D (P < .001), and the mean postoperative refraction, -1.10 and + 0.93 D, respectively. The mean percentage of cases within +/- 1.00 D was 67.0% in the papers and 82.5% in the abstracts. Uncorrected visual acuity (UCVA) of 20/40 or better was achieved in 49.2% of eyes in the papers and 83.2% of those in the abstracts; a UCVA of 20/20 or better was achieved in 22.0 and 56.6%, respectively. The portion of eyes that lost two or more lines of best corrected visual was 8.0% in the papers and 0.9% in the abstracts. Complications in the papers included irregular flap (4.0%), incomplete cut (2.5%), free cap (4.9%), perforated lenticule (2.6%), short flap (3.0%), sliding flap (1.4%), interface debris (6.8%), central island (5.3%), decentration (4.7%), epithelial ingrowth (4.3%), induced astigmatism (5.1%), wrinkles (5.9%), haze (8.7%), night vision problems (14.0%), and reoperation (8.2%), Mean latitude for LASIK cases (27.00 degrees +/- 13.73 [SD] was significantly lower than that for PRK cases (42.85 +/- 11.7 degrees). Visual outcomes of LASIK surgery show significant improvements when recent abstracts are compared with published papers. This may reflect continued improvement in the surgical techniques, surgeons' skills, and visual outcomes.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Cornea / surgery*
  • Corneal Transplantation / instrumentation
  • Corneal Transplantation / methods*
  • Humans
  • Intraoperative Complications
  • Laser Therapy*
  • Myopia / surgery*
  • Postoperative Complications
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Visual Acuity