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Laser in-situ keratomileusis (LASIK) is a method of vision correction which uses the excimer laser to precisely remove corneal tissue from beneath a protective corneal flap. By removing this tissue, the curvature of the cornea, and therefore its focusing power, is changed. Myopia or nearsightedness, hyperopia or farsightedness, and astigmatism can be corrected with LASIK.

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Images #1-3
The corneal flap or cap, created by a sophisticated instrument called the microkeratome, is flipped open like the cover of a book.

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While the patient looks at a blinking target light, the laser is pulsed onto the bare surface of the cornea (under the flap). For someone who is nearsighted, more corneal tissue is removed from the center than from the sides (peripheral cornea). This flattens the cornea and corrects the nearsightedness. Imagine making a mountain top flatter.

Images #7-9
For someone who is farsighted, more corneal tissue is removed from the sides (peripheral cornea) than from the center. This is like removing a "doughnut" of corneal tissue, making the cornea steeper, and thus correcting the farsightedness.

Images #10-12
The protective corneal flap is then flipped back into place, like closing the cover of a book.

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