Solid State Laser vs. Excimer

Since its foundation, Katana Technologies aim has been to develop a reliable, safe and precise UV Solid State Laser Platform to replace the old, unpredictable, nomograms-driven, service expensive and “gas based” Excimer technology for Laser Vision Correction (LVC).

Katana main product is LaserSoft, the only solid state laser-based surface sculpting workstation, capable of performing the correction of refractive errors (LVC) like near-sightedness (myopia), astigmatism, far-sightedness (hyperopia) or presbyopia, eliminating or reducing the need for eyeglasses or contact lenses.

What’s new and which are the main advantages of Solid State compared to Excimer Lasers?

The most frequently used laser in refractive laser surgery is the ArF-Excimer laser. It shows several disadvantages like a beam quality that is difficult to reproduce and kept stable over a long time and the need for poisonous expendables (F2-gas). Additionally, due to the aggressive action of the 193-nm radiation onto optical surfaces high service and operation costs are caused by the excimer laser technique. The stronger absorption of the 193-nm radiation by water generates certain unpredictability in the clinical results of excimer lasers and requires complex nomograms to achieve the desired correction.

Katana’s LaserSoft operates with a diode-pumped solid-state cascade laser which emits deep UV laser pulses of 210 nm wavelength for photo-refractive surgery. In contrast to the classical excimer laser of 193 nm wavelength, solid-state laser light of 210 nm wavelength passes through water and BSS without any significant absorption. Therefore, fluids on the corneal surface and changes of the ambient humidity have little or no effect on the ablation rate. No nomograms are required. During trans-epithelial treatments no drying is required. No toxic gas and gas storage is required in order to operate the system.

Thanks to Katana’s innovative solid-state laser technology, the produced laser pulses are stable and they have the optimal repetition rate up to 2 – 4 kHz. The small ablation spot of 0.2 mm and high repetition rate enable to achieve a fine-ablation profile and a smooth surface ablation.

Furthemore the LaserSoft system improves the laser system’s compactness, reliability and durability and offers several logistic, regulatory and environmental advantages compare to the Excimer laser system:

  • No laser gas, no filters
  • No noise
  • Long optics’ lifetime
  • Easy to set up, short learning curve
  • Coaxial Patient Fixation – Ophthalmic Surgical Microscope/Video Imaging
  • System is mobile within the location and completely mobile on request
  • Low operating and service costs – long warranty.

All this benefit saves operating costs and makes the day-to-day handling easier.

Several Excimer laser manufacturers sometimes offer a factory warranty of up to three years, but excluding consumables such as optics, laser heads, gas and filters, which can cause unexpected costs to customers even in the first year. Katana LaserSoft solid state laser technology allows the customers to save up on maintenance cost, over a period of five to seven years, an amount close to the cost of a new refractive laser system or an apartment…!

LaserSoft solid state laser features lead to technical advantages providing patient’s benefits and physician’s benefits as well.

“The advances of refractive surgery in the last 3 years are comparable to those of cataract surgery between 1975 and 1995. In this scenario, the solid-state laser has made a further step forward, summing up all the main achievements of the latest laser technology, with quite a few additional advantages.” Dr. Matteo Piovella, MD – OCULAR SURGERY NEWS EUROPE/ASIA-PACIFIC EDITION October 2004.