Laser Assisted Cataract Surgery
What is laser assisted cataract surgery?
Cataracts are treated by surgically removing the clouded lens and placing an artificial intraocular lens (IOL) to focus the eye. The technique for removing the cataract is called phacoemulcification and was introduced by Dr. Charles Kelman in 1967. In addition to phacoemulcifcation, there are a number of surgical steps required to allow access to the clouded lens such as creation of the self-sealing corneal incision, the opening of the lens capsule (capsularhexis), and the freeing of the lens called hydrodissection, hydrodileneation, and lens fragmentation.
LenSx is a femtosecond laser that was introduced in 2010 to assist the eye surgeon in performing more safely and precisely the supporting surgical steps described. It also has the ability to reshape the cornea by placing precise incisions called limbal relaxing incisions (LRIs) to decrease astigmatism.
Is LenSx better than standard cataract surgery?
While LenSx does enhance reproducibility and accuracy, most studies show that the improvements do not significantly enhance visual outcomes or reduce complications over standard cataract surgery. LenSx does have an advantage in removing very dense cataracts, and in the treatment of low amounts of corneal astigmatism.
Should I consider LenSx?
The benefits of LenSx are unique to the individual patient and therefore should be discussed with your eye surgeon. This therapy is not a one size fits all, and a friend or family member may rave about the advantages but this does not indicate that it is right for you.
Is LenSx covered by Insurance?
LenSx is not covered by insurances and is an out of pocket expense for the patient. LenSx generally cost around $1500 per eye.