Wavefront LASIK is really a refinement of LASIK, which is currently the best-regarded method of laser eye surgery. It involves cutting a flap in the outer layer of the cornea (the epithilium) and then re-shaping the tissue beneath with a laser. Over the past few years the popularity of Wavefront LASIK has really taken off, largely thanks to advances in both technology and consumer confidence.
Wavefront technology is a system that allows customised mapping of an individual cornea. The hardware used was originally developed by astronomers to adjust telescopes and produces a computerized 3D map of the cornea. The map's precision means that any corneal aberrations are picked up, which is exactly why Wavefront LASIK is still streets ahead of the rest of the competition. In short: greater precision means fewer mistakes.
A number of different Wavefront systems have been approved for use with LASIK technology. Clinics using Wavefront LASIK promise better results and they do have some statistics to back-up their claims (especially in achieving 20/20 vision). However, because the procedure removes more corneal tissue than conventional LASIK; it may not be for everyone. For example: patients with thin corneas would be advised to avoid Wavefront LASIK as there is a greater chance of complications.
It's important to remember that the eye is complex and can be affected in a variety of ways by surgery. Wavefront LASIK is substantially more advanced than other laser procedures, but nothing is foolproof. One online clinic providing Wavefront LASIK offers the following analogy: Wavefront LASIK is the equivalent of buying a suit form a tailor, rather than ‘off the rack', you can expect a more personalised level of service and a more comfortable product.
The majority eye care specialists have given Wavefront technology warm welcome and agree that the benefits to patients justifies the extra expense (after all anything that enhances the success rate of such an important operation must be worth investing in). If you are in any doubts about the pros and cons of Wavefront LASIK consult an eye care professional.