Mike Mann, MD has been a trendsetter in the medical community in Houston, Texas for more than 30 years. His internationally renowned ophthalmology practice Mann Eye Institute has been at the forefront of vision correction surgery since its inception.
With multiple locations in Houston and Austin, Mann Eye Institute is an industry leader in refractive surgery and Dr. Mike Mann has had a front-row seat to the evolution of LASIK in America.
“There have been more advancements in ophthalmology in the last 30 years than in most other medical fields,” said Dr. Mann. “Take cataract surgery as an example. People used to dread having it. And who could blame them? Five days of bed rest with stitches in the eye and patches over the eye. Today, patients can see better immediately and there is minimal to no downtime. Now people can’t wait to have it.”
LASIK has seen the same types of advances as researchers continue their efforts to make vision correction better and better. In 1999, scientists developed wavefront analysis, which maps a patient’s prescription. These corneal maps are as unique as fingerprints and were a game changer in vision correction.
By programming wavefront analysis data into an excimer laser, the laser could more precisely reshape each patient’s cornea, resulting in a fully customized procedure with improved results. Wavefront analysis for LASIK gained FDA approval in 2002—the same year LASIK became the world’s most common elective procedure.
That year saw another important invention: 100% bladeless laser eye surgery. With bladeless LASIK, a femtosecond laser, not a blade, is used to create the corneal flap at the precise depth and diameter desired by the surgeon. Both bladed and bladeless LASIK are proven safe and effective, but bladeless LASIK offers a variety of important advantages for many patients.
Dr. Mann has performed many bladed and bladeless LASIK procedures in his career. But his most memorable case was before the advent of blade-free LASIK and was on his son Paul Mann.
“My son Paul was just coming out of medical school and was planning to join me in practice after his residency training,” said Dr. Mann. “At this time, we were still doing bladed LASIK and I couldn’t have been more frightened.”
But the result was phenomenal. “It couldn’t have gone better,” said Dr. Mann, Sr. “Today, my son Paul is a surgeon here at Mann Eye and at age 45, he is still very happy with his results and does not have to wear glasses or contacts.”
Both Drs. Mann believe strongly that LASIK remains a wonderful option in vision correction when done on the right candidates and only the right candidates.
“I can honestly say that in all these years, I have never treated an eye I shouldn’t have and because of that, we have very, very good success rates here at Mann Eye Institute,” said Dr. Mike Mann. “We are very proud of that.”