Higher order aberrations are specific distortions with the eye’s structure that cause glare, halos and poor contrast.
There are over 20 orders of imperfections of the visual system beyond the common refractive errors. These are known as higher order aberrations of the visual system.
Some common visual problems resulting from higher order aberrations include the appearance of spokes or streaks of light projecting from a headlight or street light at night, a halo of light around a light source at night or in dim light, and difficulty making out objects or reading signage after dark or before the dawn.
When laser vision correction first began, it was only possible to correct refractive errors. Advances in laser vision technology have made it possible to correct these higher order aberrations as well.
It’s now possible to correct the quality of vision to a degree that is significantly better than that possible with glasses or contact lenses. This is done using technology known as CUSTOM laser vision correction. This technology is available at Acuity and can be performed as custom LASIK, custom PRK or custom epi-LASIK.
This photo shows the dangers of driving with uncorrected higher order aberrations. The spokes of light and glare prevent the driver from seeing the pedestrian and the roadway clearly and accurately. These higher order aberrations are correctable by Dr. Vale, using the same laser technology that corrects refractive errors.