Laser Procedure Can Change Eye Color
Although blue eyes have been regarded as one of the most important measures of attractiveness for a few centuries, it is difficult to say exactly why this is the case. While various theories abound in this regard, it’s important to note that a mere 17% of the world’s population are blue-eyed. However, these days, there is a laser procedure available, which has the ability to permanently change a person’s eye color from brown to blue.
The laser procedure has been pioneered by Stroma Medical, and it works by eliminating the brown layer of melanin that is found in the front or uppermost layers of the iris. Dr. Gregg Homer stated in an interview to CNN, “The fundamental principle is that under every brown eye is a blue eye. The only difference between a brown eye and a blue eye is this very thin layer of pigment on the surface. If you take that pigment away, then the light can enter the stroma – the little fibers that look like bicycle spokes in a light eye – and when the light scatters it only reflects back the shortest wavelengths and that’s the blue end of the spectrum.”
Preliminary Studies Emphasize Safety
Although the procedure has not yet received approval in the U.S., the company’s medical board has stated that preliminary studies on 37 patients who have undergone the procedure have shown that it is indeed safe. Dr. Homer stated in this regard, “It’s difficult to work out a way to injure someone with this laser because the energy is so low.” He went on to mention that once the procedure receives approval, patients could expect to pay approximately $5,000 to have it performed.
Saj Khan, who is an ophthalmologist at the London Eye Hospital, voiced concerns to CNN about the procedure. He stated, “The main concern with any procedure that involves releasing pigment inside the eye is that the pigment can clog up the normal drainage channels which can in turn cause the pressure inside the eye to go up. If that happens significantly enough, for long enough, it’s how patients develop glaucoma. Theory has some sense to it, but without seeing long-term outcomes and without seeing patients that have been treated n this way I wouldn’t commit myself to it.”
No Shortage of Willing Candidates
Dr. Homer stated that there is no shortage of potential patients who want to have the irreversible procedure performed. He stated, “It’s not a goal of our company to promote blue eyes. From my experience what most people are after is the translucence of the blue eyes rather than the color of the blue eye. The people who seem most vigilant about pursuing this always have a story about being young and in the presence of a sibling or a friend who had light eyes and the friend is being told how beautiful their eyes are and it sticks with them.”
Dr. Homer’s final words regarding the changing of a person’s eye color were, “All your problems don’t go away because you’ve changed your eye color but I do believe that people like to express themselves in a certain way and it’s nice when they have the freedom to do that.” In other words, only opt for the procedure if you truly want to change the color of your eyes.