These days, cataract surgery isn’t just about removing cataracts – it’s about striving for 20/Happy, or vision that can significantly improve your patient’s quality of life.
As expectations for cataract surgery continue to grow, advanced technology has started to make up more and more of the market share. According to a report conducted by Market Scope, laser cataract surgery’s market share was 11.3 percent in 2017 – this is compared to 2.8 percent in 2013, 6.1 percent in 2014, 8.3 percent in 2015, and 8.5 percent in 2016.
Another Market Scope report projected that laser cataract surgery (combined with ultrasonic phacoemulsification) will account for 1.1 million global cataract surgeries by 2022.
Who will be performing these surgeries? In other words, which ophthalmologists are regularly performing femtosecond laser-assisted cataract surgery today?
The power of young ophthalmologists
One possibility? Millennials.
Millennial physicians may be more likely to embrace laser-assisted cataract surgery than their older peers. During the 2015 MillennialEYE Live Meeting, Market Scope surveyed attendants and found that 62 percent were already offering femtosecond laser-assisted cataract surgery. The national average is only 36 percent.
This trend isn’t particularly surprising. According to research conducted by the Pew Research Center, millennials tend to be more comfortable with technology than older generations, meaning that they may be more likely to embrace advanced technology like femto.
“Patients in our residents’ clinic have been thrilled to have access to the latest procedures,” wrote Mark H. Blecher, MD, in an article in CRST. “The technology we offer augments their morale and makes the institution attractive to future students and residents.”
In addition, laser cataract surgery is now being taught during residency. While the number of ophthalmologists who perform laser-assisted cataract surgery during residency is relatively low, it’s undoubtedly more than previous generations. Early exposure to advanced technology is likely to make them more comfortable with new technology in the future.
By 2019, millennials are expected to overtake baby boomers as American’s largest generation. It will only be a matter of time before they make up the majority of ophthalmologists. What does that mean for you?
Whether you learn the technology in residency or are coming to it later in your career, Sightpath’s MoFe’s service makes it easy to provide leading-edge femtosecond technology to your patients. Our engineers and clinical support personnel are available to make sure your experience adopting this technology goes smoothly.