Femtosecond laser cataract surgery: technology and clinical practice


  • Competing/conflicts of interest: Michael Lawless is a member of the Medical Advisory Board Alcon LenSx USA.

  • Funding sources: No stated funding sources.

  • [Correction added on 14 December 2012, after first online publication: Reference 16 was updated to ‘Roberts TV, Lawless MA, Bali SJ, Hodge C, Sutton G. Surgical outcomes and safety of Femtosecond Laser Cataract Surgery: A Prospective Study of 1500 Consecutive Cases. Ophthalmology 2012; Dec 5. pii: S0161-6420(12)01045-7. doi:10.1016/j.ophtha.2012.10.026. [Epub ahead of print]‘

Dr Tim Roberts, Vision Eye Institute, 270 Victoria Avenue, Chatswood NSW 2067, Australia. Email: tim.roberts@vgaustralia.com


The recent introduction of femtosecond lasers to cataract surgery has generated much interest among ophthalmologists around the world. Laser cataract surgery integrates high-resolution anterior segment imaging systems with a femtosecond laser, allowing key steps of the procedure, including the primary and side-port corneal incisions, the anterior capsulotomy and fragmentation of the lens nucleus, to be performed with computer-guided laser precision. There is emerging evidence of reduced phacoemulsification time, better wound architecture and a more stable refractive result with femtosecond cataract surgery, as well as reports documenting an initial learning curve. This article will review the current state of technology and discuss our clinical experience.