What Are the Uses of Pachymetry in Lasik?

Doctor Answers 4

Why should a pachymeter be used during LASIK

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A pachymeter is a device that measures corneal thickness using sound waves in a similar fashion to sonar.  It is important not to intrude too deep in to the cornea.  The use of the pachymeter measures the entire thickness of the cornea, the thickness of the flap and then with an understanding of the amount of tissue removed during the treatment it is possible to calculate the amount of cornea left at the bottom.  In general, it is best to leave about 300 microns of tissue although that is not an absolute number.

Chicago Ophthalmologist

Pachymetry is the measurement of corneal thickness

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Pachymetry is the measurement of corneal thickness.  Corneas that are too thin or thick due to pathology (disease) are not likely to be able to have laser vision correction.  Visian (phakic intraocular lens implants) may be considered if corneas are too thin for laser treatments.

Christopher Coad, MD
New York Ophthalmologist

Corneal Thickness in LASIK

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Pachymetry is a term which refers to a measurement of the thickness of the cornea, or front surface of the eye.  It is used to help us determine the thickness of the cornea and to help determine which vision correction option is best for you, LASIK, photorefractive keratectomy [PRK] or implantable collamer lens.

Sandy Feldman, MD
San Diego Ophthalmologist

Corneal thickness and LASIK

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The term "pachymetry" refers to the measurement of corneal thickness. Since LASIK/PRK procedures mildly thin the cornea, it is very important to know the natural thickness of a patients cornea before proceding to treatment. If a patients cornea is too thin for LASIK or PRK it does not mean their cornea is 'abnormal", however, it may mean they are a better candidate for a Phakic IOL procedure(also known as an implantable contact lens). The decision as to which is the best procedure for you is one that is, obviously, made between you and your surgeon.

Anthony J. Kameen, MD
Baltimore Ophthalmologist

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.