Wednesday, September 16, 2009

ESCRS declares 2010 European Year of LASIK

In celebration of the 20th anniversary of the first LASIK surgeries, ESCRS has designated 2010 as the European Year of LASIK. Approximately 3.5 million LASIK surgeries are performed every year for the correction of myopia, hyperopia and astigmatism.
The European Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgeons, the leading professional society for European refractive surgeons is uniquely placed to lead this celebration, said ESCRS President Paul Rosen.
LASIK pioneer Ioannis Pallikaris, past ESCRS President and Binkhorst Medal lecturer at this year ESCRS Congress in Barcelona, will highlight European Year of LASIK with an Anniversary Congress in Crete, Greece in July 2010.
The ‘father’ of modern LASIK, Greek ophthalmologist Ioannis Pallikaris MD, PhD, said that the decision of the ESCRS to designate 2010 as the Year of LASIK is an important recognition of the significance of LASIK in the history of ophthalmology.
"I am very pleased that the ESCRS has designated 2010 as the Year of LASIK. This was something I have been in favour of for some time now and I fully support this initiative to celebrate what was essentially a European breakthrough,” said Dr Pallikaris.
Dr Pallikaris, who was the first surgeon to use the hinged flap technique in 1990, said that 2010 is a particularly opportune time to mark this important event.
“In July next year we will be holding the 10th Aegean Cornea Meeting and the celebration of the 20th anniversary of Vardinoyiannion Eye Institute of Crete (VEIC), and it is fitting that these events coincide with the 20th anniversary of the first LASIK procedure here in Crete. This will be an opportunity for ophthalmologists and researchers to take stock of the past, present and future of LASIK in particular and developments in anterior segment surgery in general. I think we should see this Year of LASIK as an opportunity to recognise and celebrate what was essentially a European breakthrough and I have no doubt that the ESCRS will play an active role in promoting the Year and helping to raise awareness about this achievement,” he said.

* Dr Pallikaris is pictured above at the Binkhorst Medal presentation with Dr Paul Rosen

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