First cataract laser surgery introduced in Maine | News

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First cataract laser surgery introduced in Maine

BANGOR, Maine (NEWS CENTER)--With cataracts being one of the leading causes of vision loss in the United States, Vision Care of Maine in Bangor has decided to adopt the only cataract removal laser in all of New England.

The Catalys Precision Laser System was adopted by the Bangor eye center this past summer, treating over 50 patients with cataract problems. A cataract is a clouding of the natural lens inside the eye that causes vision to become blurry. It's most common among the elderly. Vision Care of Maine Founder, Dr. Craig Young started researching the the new system four years ago. "I think it is going to be demanded by the public once the public sees how good of a procedure it is," says Dr. Young. "Why should they have a 35-year-old procedure when something new is on the horizon that gives a better result."

The way the Catalys Precision Laser System works is that first the patient is put under a laser where several measurements are taken of the eye's front surface. After those measurements are taken the laser will then make several tiny incisions and soften the cataract affected lens of the eye. From there Doctors are able to go in and manually remove the cataract and replace it with a new artificial lens. The whole process taking no more than 20 minutes.

Eye surgeon Dr. Curt Young, Dr. Craig Young's son, has performed most of the cataract removals at Vision Care of Maine. According to him it has a success rate unmatched in the industry. "It has not made a mistake yet and that's unfortunately more than I can say for myself," says Dr. Young. "It just adds incredible precision, accuracy and increases the safety for the patient."

The new laser system isn't covered by insurance and has to be payed for entirely out of pocket. The cost is around $1,200 per eye, depending on what type of artificial lens is required for the patient.