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YAG Capsulotomy: How a YAG Laser Works

Cross section side view of eye showing YAG laser beam entering clear cornea and through pupil to IOL in cloudy posterior capsule. Laser makes opening in cloudy capsule to allow light to pass through again.

A laser is a strong beam of energy that can be focused on a tiny point. A laser can be precisely controlled. This makes it safe and reliable.

The YAG laser

For a capsulotomy, your eye care provider uses a YAG laser. The YAG laser gives off fast, tiny bursts of energy. A special contact lens is used to help focus the laser on the right spot. The laser passes through the front of your eye. It also passes through your new IOL (intraocular lens). It doesn’t harm the IOL. When the laser reaches your posterior capsule, it makes a tiny opening in the cloudy posterior capsule. Light can then enter your eye again without being scattered by the cloudy posterior capsule. Your posterior capsule is still able to hold your IOL in place.

Online Medical Reviewer: Chris Haupert MD
Online Medical Reviewer: Raymond Kent Turley BSN MSN RN
Online Medical Reviewer: Rita Sather RN
Date Last Reviewed: 8/1/2020
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