Send to

Choose Destination
J Refract Surg. 1997 Nov-Dec;13(7):653-8.

Photodisruption in the human cornea as a function of laser pulse width.

Author information

W.K. Kellog Eye Center Dept of Ophthalmology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor 48105, USA.



We investigated the role of laser pulse width in determining fluence thresholds and efficiency for corneal photodisruption.


A laser system that delivers a wide range of pulse energies and pulse widths was used to produce ablations at pulse widths from 100 femtoseconds (fs) to 7 nanoseconds (ns). The laser-induced breakdown fluence threshold at each pulse width was determined by monitoring individual plasma emissions. Using multiple shots, the photodisruption threshold and cutting depth at each pulse width were determined histologically.


Corneal breakdown thresholds decreased at a faster rate from 7 ns to approximately 10 picoseconds (ps), compared to further reductions in pulse width below 10 ps, where little variation was seen. Breakdown for pulse widths below 10 ps showed little intershot variability, resulting in highly reproducible fluence thresholds. Corneal tissue examined histologically showed similar fluence dependency.


Corneal tissue photodisruption thresholds demonstrate pulse width dependence. At pulse widths less than 10 ps and with fluences near the breakdown threshold, ablations are maximally precise and efficient. These findings suggest optimal laser parameters for corneal surgery.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Loading ...
Support Center