Journal of Biomedical OpticsCorneal polarimetry after LASIK refractive surgery
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Imaging polarimetry provides spatially resolved information on the polarization properties of a system. In the case of the living human eye, polarization could be related to the corneal biomechanical properties, which vary from the normal state as a result of surgery or pathologies. We have used an aberro-polariscope, which we recently developed, to determine and to compare the spatially resolved maps of polarization parameters across the pupil between normal healthy and post-LASIK eyes. The depolarization distribution is not uniform across the pupil, with post-surgery eyes presenting larger levels of depolarization. While retardation increases along the radius in normal eyes, this pattern becomes irregular after LASIK refractive surgery. The maps of slow axis also differ in normal and post-surgery eyes, with a larger disorder in post-LASIK eyes. Since these changes in polarization indicate subtle structural modifications of the cornea, this approach can be useful in a clinical environment to follow the biomechanical and optical changes of the cornea after refractive surgery or for the early diagnosis of different corneal pathologies.