Patient Suffers Cornea Damage Following Laser Eye Surgery

    Lasik Expert

    This case involves a 66-year-old female with a history of astigmatism who underwent Lasik surgery. Following the surgery, the patient began to suffer left eye blurriness and dryness. She went back to her ophthalmologist the week after her operation and was found to have significant cornea damage, including a central island in that eye. The complication significantly diminished the patient’s visual acuity. It was alleged that the equipment used in this procedure was poorly maintained and caused the surgical complication.

    Question(s) For Expert Witness

    • 1. How frequently do you perform Lasik procedures?
    • 2. What are some of the complications of this procedure that would prompt immediate post-operative follow-up?
    • 3. What are some of the maintenance standards and pre-operative checks used to ensure the safety of Lasik equipment?

    Expert Witness Response E-094979

    I have performed 25,000+ procedures in my 22-year career, and I perform only laser vision correction. Some of the complications of this procedure such as infection, debris under flap, flap striae would prompt immediate postoperative follow-up. Some of the maintenance standards and pre-operative checks used to ensure the safety of Lasik equipment include but is not limited to daily calibration. For AMO platform, it is recommended that the surgeon do another calibration between every 3 eyes (which is not always done). The surgeon is supposed to send the calibration cards to AMO for further, finer checking to see if the laser has an optical problem (which is rarely done but my center does it). It is possible that the center may save calibration cards if they do not send them periodically to AMO. We can subpoena them, send them to AMO, and AMO will identify a central island problem–in which case you would win and the other eye would settle.

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