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Research

LASIK ResearchDr. Walter has made significant contributions to the field of ophthalmology through his research. Some of his most notable projects are outlined below.

LASIK Research

Dr. Walter has long focused on developing ways to improve LASIK outcomes. In 2004, he published a landmark article concerning the environmental effects of temperature and humidity on LASIK surgery. This research has been reported in various media outlets including the Chicago Tribune, New York Times, LA Times, Washington Post, Time, Shape, Men's Health, and CNN.

Dr. Walter's study showed that outdoor humidity in the days prior to the LASIK procedure could reduce the effect of the laser, resulting in small undercorrections during higher humidity and small overcorrections during drier weather conditions. He found that controlling room humidity during the LASIK procedure helps reduce this effect, but there is also a need to compensate the power of the laser during extreme weather conditions. This likely is due to extra water in the cornea, causing the laser to remove less collagen than intended. Currently, Dr. Walter is capable of correcting for this with a small adjustment to the laser, achieving excellent results and low enhancement (re-do) rates. There is no need to avoid having your LASIK surgery during the summer months (or any other time of year due to weather conditions) because manually adjusting the laser according to daily fluctuations in humidity has proven more effective than not controlling for weather conditions. Dr. Walter continues his research in this area and is working with Wavelight lasers to detect the exact amount of additional water in the cornea prior to laser ablation in order to obtain even better LASIK results for patients.

Technology

Graph from Dr. Walter's original article which shows the effect on humidity and enhancement rates.

Cornea Research:

Endoserter

Dr. Walter is one of the first surgeons to perform DSEK and has always been interested in improving the results of this exciting new procedure. From the beginning, his goal has been to improve the insertion of donor tissue to prevent damage typically associated with pressure from forceps. In accordance with this desire, Dr. Walter invented the EndoSerter corneal delivery system, which has received FDA approval. He has authored multiple published papers demonstrating how its use improves DSEK results, including no-stitch DSEK.

Regenerative MedicineRegenerative Medicine

Recently, Dr. Walter was granted a regenerative medicine patent from the US Patent Office for growing corneal endothelial cells for human transplantation. Growing clean, pure lines of endothelial cells in a lab, should help alleviate demand on cadaveric donor tissue worldwide. There will be more to come on this revolutionary new biotechnology in the near future.

Cataract Research:

Dr. Walter has published several articles on reducing post-operative complications after cataract surgery by using an optimized drop regimen. Not only has this regimen been proven by Dr. Walter to improve patient outcomes but also has been effective at reducing the number of drops to be administered by the patient post surgery.

Dr. Walter is also in the early stages of researching the use of the femtosecond cataract laser to determine methods to maximize its precision and patient outcomes.