Holmium laser thermal keratoplasty of 10 poorly sighted eyes

R. G. Ariyasu, B. Sand, R. Menefee, D. Hennings, C. Rose, M. Berry, J. J. Garbus, P. J. McDonnell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: The holmium:YAG laser shrinks stromal collagen and changes corneal refractive power, reportedly without recurrent or persistent epithelial defects, stromal necrosis, or damage to the epithelium and endothelium observed with some other thermokeratoplasty techniques. METHODS: We studied the safety of the holmium:YAG laser using various patterns and energy densities after treating 12 poorly sighted eyes, two immediately prior to corneal transplantation and 10 followed for a mean period of 90 days (range, 60 to 180 days). Visual acuity, intraocular pressure and inflammation, central corneal endothelial cell density and thickness, and intraocular structures of the eye were indices evaluated regularly. Patients were also assessed for specific symptoms during the post-operative period. RESULTS: There were no problems with epithelial healing and no stromal necrosis or evidence of endothelial damage; no significant differences were noted in any of the endothelial cell indices examined. A mean change in corneal curvature of 1.10 diopter (D) was achieved, but varying amounts of regression of this effect was noted. CONCLUSIONS: Holmium:YAG laser thermal keratoplasty appears to be safe over a follow up of up to 180 days. Corneal refractive changes on the order of 1.05 D can be achieved using the parameters employed in this study. Whether or not larger, persistent corneal refractive change can be achieved with a holmium:YAG laser remains to be determined.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)358-365
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Refractive Surgery
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1995
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Ophthalmology


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