This excerpt taken from the EYE 8-K filed Jul 13, 2005.
While VISX devotes significant resources to research and development, VISXs research and development may not lead to new products that achieve commercial success.
VISXs research and development process is expensive, prolonged, and entails considerable uncertainty. Development of a new medical device, from discovery through testing and registration to initial product launch, typically takes between three and seven years. Each of these periods varies considerably from product to product and country to country. Because of the complexities and uncertainties associated with ophthalmic research and development, products VISX is currently developing may not complete the development process or obtain the regulatory approvals required to market such products successfully. The products currently in VISXs development pipeline may not be approved by regulatory entities and may not be commercially successful, and VISXs current and planned products could be surpassed by more effective or advanced products.