J Cataract Refract Surg. 2005 Oct;31(10):2016-8. Related Articles, Links

Maldonado MJ, Juberias JR, Pinero DP, Alvarez-Vidal A, Rutzen AR.

From the Department of Ophthalmology (Maldonado, Juberias, Pinero, Alvarez-Vidal), University Clinic, University of Navarra, Pamplona, Spain, and Department of Ophthalmology (Rutzen), University of Maryland, Baltimore, Maryland, USA.



A flap tear occurred during laser in situ keratomileusis (LASIK) retreatment using a flap-lifting technique in 1 eye of 2 patients 4 to 5 months after the primary procedure. In the first case, the tear occurred in a decentered, standard thickness flap (168 mum) in a location close to the corneal limbus and limbal vessels. In the second case, the tear occurred in a well-centered thin flap (116 mum) that involved a peripheral corneal pannus. The false track was identified early, and central extension of the tear was averted. After the flap was successfully dissected, retreatment was performed without further complications. This report suggests that flaps with margins near the limbus or a corneal pannus may be prone to an earlier and stronger healing process at the edge that may lead to a flap tear during LASIK retreatment. This may be of increasing importance because of the trend toward larger flap diameters.