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FAA Approves Use of Conductive Keratoplasty (CK) for Pilots

U.S. Airmen Can Now Take Advantage of Leading Non-laser Vision Correction Procedure to Improve Near Vision

lasik ck nearvision
Pilots who require reading glasses or bifocals may now have NearVision CK surgery.

IRVINE, Calif., Oct. 3, 2005 /PRNewswire/ -- Ophthalmic device manufacturer Refractec Inc. announced today that the Federal Aviation Administration has established the protocol for airplane pilots wanting to reduce their dependence on glasses by having the NearVision CK (conductive keratoplasty) treatment.

"Certification by the FAA as a vision correction procedure for pilots validates the safety and value of CK as a refractive treatment," said Mitchell B. Campbell, president of Refractec, Inc. "Only the safest and most effective procedures obtain an FAA protocol, and we're thrilled that pilots can now enjoy the benefits of NearVision CK."

FAA Protocol for Conductive Keratoplasty

U.S. pilots who are considering having conductive keratoplasty to improve their vision may now do so without losing their aeromedical certification for flying. First, before considering CK, the pilot should check with his or her employer (if employed by the airlines) and/or flight medical examiner to determine if CK is an appropriate treatment option and if post-CK vision meets their individual requirements for flying.

For details on certification requirements and the complete protocol for CK, please visit the Federal Aviation Administration website at or go to: FAA CK Protocol

In 2004, Refractec's NearVision CK became the leading nonlaser refractive procedure in the U.S. and is the fastest growing vision procedure since the introduction of Lasik. To date, more than 125,000 CK treatments have been performed worldwide and more than 800 physicians are certified to perform NearVision CK.

About NearVision CK

NearVision CK uses radiofrequency energy, instead of a laser, to reshape the cornea. There is no cutting and no removal of tissue. The procedure takes less than three minutes and is done in-office with only topical (eye drop) anesthesia. In FDA studies, 98 percent of patients could see J5 (magazine- and newspaper-size print) following the procedure and 87 percent could read J3 or phonebook-sized print.

NearVision CK is performed using a probe thinner than a strand of hair that releases radiofrequency energy. Applied to the cornea in a circular pattern, the radio waves shrink small areas of collagen to create a constrictive band (like the tightening of a belt) that increases the curvature of the cornea, bringing near vision back into focus.

NearVision CK is indicated for the temporary improvement of near vision in emmetropic presbyopes (those who require only reading glasses) and hyperopic presbyopes (those who require reading and distance glasses). Website

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