First IOL for Cataract Patients in Northwest Georgia

Dr. Bob Harbin was the first surgeon in Northwest Georgia to implant Intraocular Lenses (IOLs) into patients with cataracts. Prior to the introduction of IOLs, patients who underwent cataract extraction were left without a lens in the eye, requiring very thick and often uncomfortable glasses to restore their vision. The implantation of an IOL at the time of surgery greatly reduces and often eliminates the need for full time spectacle use providing patients with greater satisfaction after their surgery. Today, virtually every patient receives an IOL at the time of their cataract surgery.


First LASIK in Rome

In June of 1999, Dr. Paul Harton performed the first LASIK surgery in Northwest Georgia. LASIK is the surgical correction of nearsightedness. Today, Dr. Harton performs Intralase (blade-free) LASIK surgery on patients to correct nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism.


First CrystaLens in Georgia

In 2004, Harbin Clinic Eye Center became the first practice in Georgia, and one of the first in the nation, to implant a new type of Deluxe IOL (Intraocular Lens) called the CrystaLens. The CrystaLens is an IOL with the unique ability to change its position within the eye. Like conventional IOLs, the CrystaLens allows the surgeon to make the patient less dependent on glasses for distance vision post-operatively. 


First Visian ICL in Georgia

On February 13, 2006, Dr. Paul Harton was the first surgeon in Georgia to implant the Visian ICL (an implantable contact lens inserted into the eye to correct nearsightedness).


First Laser Assisted Cataract Surgery in the region 

On September 23, 2013, Dr. Paul Harton performed the first bladeless cataract surgery offered in the region.  This procedure known as Refractive Laser Assisted Cataract Surgery, or “ReLACS,” creates incisions more precisely than traditional cataract surgery done by hand, and can also treat astigmatism at the time of surgery.  The increased control and flexibility offered by this procedure may reduce the patient’s dependence on corrective eyewear after surgery.


Original Research

Dr. Harton has won the prestigious Best Paper of Session (BPOS) Award at the annual American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgeons three times.
First in 2010, in Boston, for research on High-Frequency Ultrasound Assessment of Human Crystalline Lens Changes During Natural Accommodation.
The second was awarded in 2013, in San Francisco, for Pre-Operative Determination of Post-Operative Lens Implant Postion in Cataract Surgery Patients Using High-Frequency Ultrasound Imaging.The Lens Implant Position Research was again recognized as a BPOS in 2014 in Boston.