Occasionally, I will have a prospective patient ask me for my thoughts on something they have found on the internet regarding the possibility of a “new” or improved laser they have read about. The London Eye Hospital promotes just that on their web site purporting to possess a unique YAG laser device that is new and improved upon other lasers and only available at their Harley Street offices.
The LEH Vitlase is nothing more than a ‘re-branding’ of an existing, standard, ‘off-the-shelf’ laser made by Ellex, The Ultra-Q model. They are just using the name and associated prestige of the London Eye Hospital (LEH) to make it sound like they have something special and can treat eye floaters and other vitreous degenerations that others can not. I have seen their web site and I think it is a bit misleading. for instance, from their web site:
"Overall the LEH VitLase™ provides the safest and quickest effective laser treatment for floaters and is exclusively available at the London Eye Hospital."
Actually, the safest treatment for eye floaters is best achieved by using an ophthalmologist that has experience and dedication to the difficult task and possessing the unique skill set of having fired hundreds of thousand of laser shots (or in the case of Dr. Johnson, over 10 million !!) in the treatment of vitreous eye floaters. Nowhere in the LEH web site is there any mention of the identity of the surgeon performing the procedure, or his or her experience in this regard.
All YAG lasers emit essentially the same wavelength and frequency and ‘cone-angle’ profile of the energy. But for other technical reasons, not all YAG laser brands can be used to treat eye floater. Regardless, we all have the same limitations as to how close we can treat to the retina and lens, for instance. Rather than focus on the type of laser, I will suggest really evaluating the doctor’s experience and dedication to the practice of treating eye floaters. That matters much more than the brand of laser. – Dr. Johnson