Exposing the LASIK Scam

Post-LASIK infection
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Author:  Broken Eyes [ Fri Aug 04, 2006 1:20 pm ]
Post subject:  Post-LASIK infection


Post-LASIK infection can threaten a patient?s sight

Surgeons should be familiar with risk factors, symptoms and treatments of keratitis that present after LASIK.

By Amar Agarwal, MS, FRCS, FRCOphth; Soosan Jacob, MS, FRCS, DNB, MNAMS; Nibaran Gangopadhyay, MS


"However post-LASIK infections can be a disastrous complication for the patient who is often just undergoing a cosmetic procedure and usually has high expectations (Figure 1). Other refractive surgeries, such as radial keratotomy and hexagonal keratotomy, have been associated with infections in the past. There have also been reports of endophthalmitis after incisional refractive surgery.

Despite this, the occurrence of keratitis after LASIK is a reality, and numerous case reports testify this. During surgery, the corneal stroma may come into contact with infectious agents coming from the patient?s own body or from contaminants present on the instruments. The surgeon and the operating room may also act as a source. Breaks in the epithelial barrier and excessive surgical manipulation are other risk factors. Other factors in the postoperative period, such as delayed postoperative re-epithelialization of the cornea, the use of topical steroids and therapeutic contact lenses as well as decreased corneal sensitivity and dry eye, can all contribute to post-LASIK infections.

Infectious keratitis generally presents later than diffuse lamellar keratitis, with which it is often confused. It traditionally presents at least 1 week after surgery and often months later.

The infection can spread to involve all layers of the cornea and can cause flap and stromal melting and scarring, anterior chamber reaction, hypopyon, secondary glaucoma, anterior and posterior synechiae, irregular astigmatism, and loss of BCVA and UCVA."

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