LASIK eye surgery has made significant changes in the way that we adapt to the world around us. Glasses have been around for hundreds of years. Contact lenses have been around for decades, although the concept appeared much earlier. Laser eye correction has changed our vision even farther by allowing a permanent change in the optical properties of the eye to improve our vision.
The safety of laser vision correction has been challenged on occasion and websites exist which point to the troubles that patients have experienced when undergoing correction. Despite these opposing opinions, millions of patients each year report satisfaction with the procedure. A 10 minute laser vision correction procedure can provide a lifetime of independence from contact lenses or glasses.
New technologies such as iris registration, eye tracking, customized wavefront correction, and other features have further improved the safety and accuracy of the laser vision correction procedure. Most patients are satisfied with the initial correction, though in less than 10 percent of cases patients will be required to undergo a second follow-up procedure to provide the best possible vision.
In addition to LASIK, there are a variety of procedures that can assist patients with high prescriptions, thin corneas, far-sighted prescriptions, high astigmatism, cataracts, and even presbyopia (decreased near vision due to age). Patients who seek out a refractive surgeon for a laser vision correction procedure should be made aware of all possible options. Some surgeons may not feel comfortable performing all available surgeries but they are still required by law to provide information regarding optional procedures that might provide better results.
While some surgeons specialize in LASIK alone, these surgeons do a disservice to their patients if they do not present options such as crystalens, visian, restor, rezoom, intacs, customized correction, or other LASIK alternatives. Patients who might be considered to be in categories that would benefit from alternative procedures have a right to know about these choices. Every LASIK patient should feel comfortable asking the surgeon or doctor if there are other options that might be beneficial and what reason the surgeon had of choosing LASIK over these other options.
We recommend that patients inform themselves about laser vision correction prior to the procedure and that they are aware of its advantages and limitations. This way they can have correct expectations and understand the benefits that options to laser vision correction or LASIK might present.
If you have any questions regarding laser vision correction or LASIK, feel free to consult with our refractive surgery counselors.