Iridex Corporation (Mountain View, CA) has begun shipping its IQ 577 laser systems to customers. According to the company, this solid-state laser is indicated for the treatment of glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, and age-related macular degeneration.
Because the IQ 577's high-power, true yellow light (577-nm wavelength) scatters less light than a 532-nm green laser system, it reportedly reduces the amount of power required to treat intraocular structures and thus decreases patients' discomfort. Additionally, the laser's tissue-sparing MicroPulse technology electronically chops each pulse of energy into microsecond bursts. This strategy reportedly decreases the laser's thermal effects on tissue, reduces the formation of burns, limits thermal spread, and prevents collateral damage during subthreshold retinal treatments. Each pulse has a short "on" time (300 microseconds) to minimize the thermal spread, followed by a long "off" time (1,700 microseconds) to favor thermal relaxation toward the baseline temperature before the next micropulse occurs. When used to perform micropulse laser trabeculoplasty, the IQ 577 reportedly reduces IOP without damaging the trabecular meshwork.
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