Cornea Laser Treatment OKd: The Food and...

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Cornea Laser Treatment OKd: The Food and Drug Administration has approved an eye laser that polishes the cornea to improve vision and prevent the need for corneal transplants in many cases.

Summit Technology Inc. announced this week the approval of the nation's first excimer laser to treat corneal scars and other diseases. Experts predicted it could be used to treat between 10,000 and 25,000 Americans this year and could eventually prevent many of the 40,000 corneal transplants performed annually.

The laser uses a cold beam of ultraviolet light to vaporize cells in the cornea, the clear covering of the eye. Each laser pulse evaporates a microscopically thin layer of cornea tissue. It treats scars, deposits and corneal diseases that impede vision and can correct the corneal irregularity that often prevents people from wearing contact lenses.

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