Excimer laser photorefractive keratectomy for myopia: comparison of 4.00- and 5.00-millimeter ablation zones.

D. P. O'Brart, D. S. Gartry, C. P. Lohmann, M. G. Muir, J. Marshall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

93 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: To date, there has been no systematic study of the effects of ablation zone diameter on the outcome of photorefractive keratectomy. To address these issues, we examined a series of eyes with bilateral corrections using different-sized ablation zones. METHODS: Thirty-three patients underwent bilateral photorefractive keratectomy (Summit Excimed UV200, Waltham, Mass) with identical dioptric corrections in both eyes, except first eyes had 4.00-millimeter and second eyes had 5.00-millimeter ablation zones. Identical postoperative eyedrop regimens were used in both eyes of each subject and the interval between treatments was 12 months. The mean depth of the programmed central ablation was 24 microns in eyes treated with 4.00-millimeter and 39 microns with 5.00-millimeter zones. RESULTS: There was no statistically significant difference in the preoperative refraction between first and second eyes. Mean changes in refraction at 1, 3, 6, 9, and 12 months were significantly greater in eyes treated with 5.00-millimeter ablation diameters (p < .001). No eyes treated with 4.00-millimeter zones were overcorrected, but five eyes (15%) treated with 5.00-millimeter beams had a refraction greater than +1.00 diopter (D) at 12 months postoperatively. There was no significant difference in the amount of anterior stromal haze between the two eyes at any stage. In 14 patients, less night halo was noticed in the eye treated with a 5.00-millimeter zone. Using a computer program, halo measurements were made in both eyes of 12 patients whose pre- and postoperative refractions were within 0.50 D. The magnitude of halo was significantly less in eyes treated with 5.00-millimeter zones (p < .01). CONCLUSIONS: Despite greater depths of stromal ablation with 5.00-millimeter diameters, there was no increased anterior stromal haze or postoperative regression of refraction. The biological and physical constraints governing the optimum size of the photorefractive keratectomy ablation zone are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)87-94
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of refractive and corneal surgery
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1994
Externally publishedYes


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