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Femtosecond laser-assisted cataract surgery

He, Lingmina; Sheehy, Katrinab; Culbertson, Williamc

Current Opinion in Ophthalmology: January 2011 - Volume 22 - Issue 1 - p 43–52
doi: 10.1097/ICU.0b013e3283414f76
Cataract surgery and lens implantation: Edited by Natalie Afshari

Purpose of review In 2010, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) cleared femtosecond laser systems for cataract surgery. Available in 2011, this technology has the potential to significantly impact cataract surgery.

Recent findings Femtosecond lasers offer surgeons the ability to make very precise cuts in a targeted area without damaging the surrounding tissues. This technology has already dramatically changed refractive surgery and is poised to do the same for cataract surgery. Three companies, OptiMedica, LenSx (acquired by Alcon in September 2010), and LensAR, in different stages of FDA clearance, are developing femtosecond laser systems for cataract surgery. These systems will create the initial corneal incisions, capsulotomy, and also fragment the lens.

Summary This article outlines the advantages of femtosecond laser cataract surgery and provides an initial comparison of the LensAR, LenSx/Alcon, and OptiMedica systems and early clinical results.

aDepartment of Ophthalmology, Stanford University, Stanford, USA

bOptiMedica Corporation, Santa Clara, California, USA

cBascom Palmer Eye Institute, University of Miami, Miami, Florida, USA

Correspondence to William Culbertson, MD, Bascom Palmer Eye Institute, University of Miami, 900 NW, 17th Street, Miami, FL 33136, USA Tel: +1 305 333 7439; e-mail:

© 2011 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.