Dr. Alberto Chacon Aponte Speaks about New Technology in Bogota to Correct Myopia and Astigmatism with Corneal Surgery
December 08, 2017
Both adults and young people often suffer from visual problems associated with the deterioration of the cornea, which does not allow them to see well from near or far. Thanks to technological advances in Colombia, ophthalmologists in Bogota have been performing a type of corneal surgery that corrects patients' visual decline due to myopia or astigmatism.
Dr. Alberto Chacon Aponte, an ophthalmologist at Incornea, spoke about this new technology that corrects visual anomalies in an interview. "We are dedicated to refractive surgery, corneal transplantation, and cataract surgery. We have been active for 30 years, and we have advanced a lot technologically, especially with regards to surgery for myopia. This procedure is already in its third generation. The first generation came out around 1990, when we used the first techniques, which were called surface lasers and used very basic technology. Then came the second generation, LASIK, and now we have entered the third generation with the femtosecond laser. This new technique is called SMILE," said Dr. Chacon.
Chacon described SMILE technology as the most advanced on the market. Colombia has been one of the countries that has put it into practice, specifically at Incornea, in order to offer patients the latest in laser technology. The ophthalmologist said that the advantage of this technology is that the patient does not feel pain because the procedure is very fast. He also explained that the laser can correct nearsightedness in approximately 30 seconds and the procedure lasts a total of five minutes. The next day, the patient will have made an 80% to 90% recovery and can return to their daily activities.
Another advantage described by Dr. Chacon is that patients who are operated on with the SMILE laser can practice high-impact sports, like boxing, without suffering vision-related injuries. the second-generation LASIK laser does not have this advantage. "...Although LASIK corrects myopia and astigmatism, it requires us to make a laminar cut in the cornea to create a cap, and that cap can break or fall off with a blow," Dr. Chacon said. "On the other hand, with this new technology, there are no covers or cuts on the surface, only an internal cut. But the cornea remains compact. In this way, patients can be subjected to boxing, beatings, and other trauma on the day after surgery and nothing will happen. This surgery treats myopia from -1 to -10 diopters and astigmatism of up to five diopters," Dr. Aponte said.
The contraindications that exist when using this surgical are for people who suffer from corneal diseases like keratoconus or collagen diseases in patients suffering from rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, or minors whose myopia has not stabilized.
"For example, if a patient is 20 years old and his or her myopia is not stable but continues to move forward, it is preferable to wait. The idea is that patients are a little older, 23 or 25. The maximum age could be between 50 and 55 years old, depending on the condition of the patient. In summary, it is a surgery that patients are thankful for because they do not experience much pain. There are risks, like with any surgery, and the most frequent are infections, [which do not happen frequently], about one in 10,000 cases," said, Dr. Chacon, an ophthalmologist at Incornea.
It is important to point out that myopia is a refractive defect characterized by blurred vision, which means that the eye does not refract light adequately so that images can be seen clearly. A patient suffering from nearsightedness can see perfectly up close, but objects lose clarity from afar. On the other hand, astigmatism is a type of refractive error that causes blurred or distorted vision when the patient tries to clearly see an object at short and long distances. If the cornea and the lens are not smooth and the curvature is not even, rays of light are refracted incorrectly.
Incornea celebrates the arrival of this new laser technology, which has allowed them to perform successful surgeries with excellent results. To learn more about this advancement in corneal surgery in Bogota, we invite you to visit the news section at www.incornea.com.co.